This month represents the ten-year anniversary of PCI DSS, the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council. PCI DSS was designed to ensure that businesses and organisations are handling their customers’ credit and debit card data in a secure manner. It reduces data breaches and fraud by implementing a set of 12 requirements that need to be followed. Below, we take a look at some of the positives of PCI DSS in further detail.
- A high benchmark for businesses – For any sector to evaluate how well it is doing, there must be an objective standard in place. This gives businesses and organisations clarity regarding what they should be aiming for. PCI DSS sets the bar, and without it, most businesses would not know how to keep their customers’ payment information safe.
- A mark of trust – Businesses who are PCI compliant reap the rewards of greater trust from their customers and potential customers. People will be more likely to use their service if they know that they adhere to PCI DSS and go to great lengths to make sure that their clients’ payment data is safe. You can use this to enhance your brand and market your business as a credible and trusted one.
- Third–party service providers addressed – PCI DSS 3.2, the latest version of the PCI DSS, extends beyond merchants. A requirement for third-party service providers has been added in accordance with a number of data breaches that have occurred over the past few years due to a weak line in information security. To prove operational procedures and security policies are being followed, third-party providers need to perform reviews on a quarterly basis, as well as penetration testing on segmentation controls twice a year.
- Establishes a strong start point – Another benefit associated with this standard is the fact that it provides an excellent start point for any company or organisation that is seeking a baseline to protect the payment card information of their customers. They can get to grips with all of the fundamentals associated with a strong information security program, including the identification of where such data lives, targeting any vulnerabilities that could lead to a compromise, remediating said weaknesses, and reporting to the relevant card brands and banks.
- Continual attention demanded – One of the great things about PCI DSS is that it is updated regularly, unlike a lot of other business standards. In fact, since it was introduced in 2006, PCI DSS has been updated seven times. This is essential when you consider the evolving business and technical environment. It means that businesses need to provide this area of their business with constant attention, ensuring that they stay ahead of the latest trends and do all in their power to protect confidential payment information.
All things considered, it is not difficult to see why PCI DSS is so important across all industries. It is the only way to make sure that all businesses are making the effort that is required of them to protect their consumers’ data.