Yes, achieving PCI SSC compliance is a complex process filled with in-depth requirements and rigorous standards. But Optimal Payments has broken it all down into the three big “need-to-knows” that protect cardholder security but also improve merchant productivity.
In the wake of increasing fraud and security threats, PCI SSC is cracking down on security compliance when it comes to online payment processing. While the idea of stricter standards may not seem enticing, merchants can actually use this as an opportunity to better protect consumers and enhance productivity.
PCI security standards are designed to lower the risk that fraud merchants face through specific security goals and requirements. Here are a few important takeaways from the whitepaper and what merchants can do to help prevent the theft of cardholder data.
According to Optimal Payments, credit card fraud remains one of the largest security issues in the payments and eCommerce landscape today.
A study from Javelin Strategy & Research showed that in 2013 alone, losses from credit card fraud in the U.S. totaled roughly $18 billion. They further suggest that many small to medium-sized businesses may be more susceptible to attacks due to reduced budgets or investment in online security measures.
The problem is only growing, placing an even heavier burden on merchants to remain in compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS).
The launch of PCI’s latest standard, PCI-DSS 3.1, highlights the need for a merchant to regularly monitor and test networks, protect cardholder data, maintain a Vulnerability Management Program, implement strong access control measures and maintain an Information Security Policy.
SHUTTING HACKERS DOWN
It is of the upmost importance for companies to understand the complexities surrounding an implementation of PCI 3.1, but the whitepaper also points to the requirements that may actually enhance and support a merchant’s productivity and growth.
Tokenization presents a unique opportunity for businesses to lower their risk of fraud. By implementing the operational change to their payment processing structure, merchants replace the payment card numbers of customers with randomly generated “tokens,” which pose no value to cybercriminals. Not only does this better protect sensitive consumer data, but it also places the merchant in a position to further reduce its requirement liability for compliance.
Achieving PCI 3.1 compliance may not be a cure-all for removing the threat of hackers entirely, but a thoroughly secured payment system showing fewer weaknesses is a great place to start for deterring cybercriminals.
TAKING A LOOK UNDER THE HOOD
De-scoping the payment process, which involves a merchant breaking down and identifying each step in an eCommerce transaction, from the online payments page to the customer’s payment card information being touched by a vendor or bank. This process may help the merchant to discover if any portions of the transaction process need to be outsourced to an approved third party, therefore reducing unnecessary liability on the part of the merchant.
This process can ensure a higher level of security, as well as a reduction in the likelihood of attacks, while also significantly decreasing the merchant’s compliance certification responsibilities, the whitepaper explained.
While it is no easy process, remaining PCI 3.1 compliant enables merchants to take a comprehensive look and evaluation of existing security measures and operational procedures. This eye-opening experience can offer enhanced protection of the payment processing system, as well as solidifying a merchant’s reputation.
As Optimal Payments explained, the tighter security requirements associated with PCI’s latest standards will undoubtedly leave merchants more secure than ever, resulting in benefits for the entire ecosystem.
To learn more about the key findings discovered by Optimal Payments related to PCI compliance and how they can work together to improve both security and productivity, download the full whitepaper by clicking the button below…