A guest post from Sarah Doyle at CR-T.
Do you know what it means to be PCI compliant? Or why it’s important? As technology evolves, a lot of businesses are struggling to maintain high levels of security. This article will teach you why PCI compliance is important and how you can take action now to protect your business.
What is PCI?
Payment card industry (PCI) compliance refers to the standards that businesses must follow in order to secure credit card data. The PCI Security Standards Council (SSC) creates and manages these standards.
The PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) applies to all entities that store, process, and/or transmit cardholder data. If you accept process payment cards, PCI DSS applies to you.
Each of the PCI SSC’s founding payment brand members (American Express, Discover, JCB International, MasterCard, and Visa) have their own PCI compliance programs. These programs are designed to protect their affiliated payment card account data.
Why Should You Become PCI Compliant?
PCI compliance is mandatory, but for good reason. It protects businesses from data breaches and prevents fraudulent activity. If cardholder data is stolen, the business may be subject to fines, legal fees, and a damaged reputation.
In 2019, Verizon released its annual payment security report, in which an entire section was dedicated to PCI compliance. The report revealed the following statistics:
- Only 36.7% of organizations reported full compliance in 2018.
- The Asia Pacific region had the highest percentage of compliant organizations.
- The hospitality industry reported the lowest percentage of organizational compliance.
Taking the necessary steps to become PCI compliant will help you avoid data loss while keeping your sensitive information protected.
How Can You Become PCI Compliant?
Becoming PCI compliant means adhering to the standards set forth by the PCI SSC. It’s six major requirements include the following:
- Build and maintain a secure network and system
- Protect cardholder data
- Manage ongoing vulnerability
- Implement and maintain access control
- Regularly monitor and test utilized networks
- Clearly document all policies
Meeting with a financial advisor or another expert will help you learn what additional steps need to be taken in order to achieve PCI compliance.
Partner with a Business that Values Compliance
As you work to implement and maintain PCI compliance, partner with other businesses that share your same values. You can work together to accomplish a higher level of security with those that offer more than just a product. Look for those that actively seek to consult and guide you to a better solution for your business growth.
For example, Platinum Payments is an organization whose mission is to protect merchants from rate increases and unnecessary equipment, while helping them remain PCI compliant. Platinum Payments offers 24/7 customer support and promises no termination fees, contracts, or margin increases all while guiding your growth through their platform.
In addition to PCI compliance, Platinum Payments utilizes artificial intelligence (AI) to improve the customer experience. The front end of a transaction looks and feels the same to customers. However, on the back end, an AI will auto-populate the needed contact points for card networks. This will reduce risk and save you time throughout the transaction process.
Platinum Payments’ level of experience and attention to detail will take your PCI compliance to the next level, helping you to achieve greater security and provide a better experience for your customers.
By partnering with us, you are able to help your clients become secure and protected in the ever-moving landscape of financial threats and disasters.
Here at CR-T, we take pride in providing enterprise-level IT services at prices that work for small businesses. Our team of experts can become your IT support department, responding to issues quickly, often before you even know about them. Covering everything from your servers and network infrastructure to your computers, workstations, and mobile devices, we provide end-to-end solutions for all your technology needs.
Time and experience have helped us develop best practices and workflow procedures designed to keep your focus on your business, not your technology.