January 29, 2014

From the world’s largest corporations to small Internet stores, compliance with the PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is vital for all merchants who accept credit cards, online or offline, because nothing is more important than keeping your customer’s payment card data secure. The size of your business will determine the specific compliance requirements that must be met. Note that enforcement of merchant compliance is managed by the individual payment brands and not by the Council – the same is true for non-compliance penalties.

PCI Security Standards are technical and operational requirements set by the PCI Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) to protect cardholder data. The Council is responsible for managing the security standards, while compliance with the PCI Security Standards is enforced by the payment card brands. The standards apply to all organizations that store, process or transmit cardholder data – with guidance for software developers and manufacturers of applications and devices used in those transactions.

If you are a merchant that accepts payment cards, you are required to be compliant with the PCI Data Security Standard. You can find out your exact compliance requirements only from your payment brand or acquirer. However, before you take action, you may want to obtain background information and a general understanding of what you will need to do from the information and links here.

The PCI DSS follows common-sense steps that mirror security best practices. There are three steps for adhering to the PCI DSS – which is not a single event, but a continuous, ongoing process. First, Assess — identify cardholder data, take an inventory of your IT assets and business processes for payment card processing, and analyze them for vulnerabilities that could expose cardholder data. Second, Remediate — fix vulnerabilities and do not store cardholder data unless you need it. Third, Report — compile and submit required remediation validation records (if applicable), and submit compliance reports to the acquiring bank and card brands you do business with.

For more information, download our Getting Started Guide and/or our Quick Reference Guide.

To learn what your specific compliance requirements are, check with your card brand compliance program:

American Express: www.americanexpress.com/datasecurity
Discover Financial Services: http://www.discovernetwork.com/merchants/fraud-protection
JCB International: http://partner.jcbcard.com/security/jcbprogram/index.html
MasterCard: http://www.mastercard.com/sdp
Visa Inc: http://www.visa.com/cisp
Visa Europe: http://www.visaeurope.com/ais

For additional information about how to get started, contact us.





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