What is PCI compliance and why do you need it?
When a business purchases a server, they are told what type of cards are allowed on that device. But it is not always clear how much extra security and technology it takes to meet the PCI standards. Complying with these standards can be a challenge for businesses and their IT departments.
PCI stands for Payment Card Industry. It is a standard that ensures information security and data integrity by providing guidelines for the technology and security used on networks. The standards include requirements for a wide range of technology, including firewalls, anti-virus software, and intrusion detection systems.
As of July 2013, PCI DSS has been signed into law by the president of the United States of America, making IT professionals and companies required to comply with it as a requirement in their contracts or as part of their service agreements.
The “Issuer” and the “Acquirer” are businesses that may be affected by PCI compliance. The company that issues credit, debit, or any other kind of payment card is called an “Issuer.” The companies that accept those payment cards and completes transactions are called the “Acquirer.”
How can authorize.net help you become PCI compliant?
Authorize.Net is one of the leading companies that specialize in PCI compliance and they can help you get your company on the PCI “safe-zone”. If you want to learn more about Authorize.Net, simply click the link below: http://www.authorize.net/links/link.asp?link=firms&id=22
What are the benefits of being PCI compliant?
To be PCI compliant means you have met the guidelines to make sure that your business can get their cardholder data out of harm’s way. In today’s society, there are many things that makes businesses vulnerable to security attacks and being PCI compliant is a step in the right direction. When a business becomes PCI compliant, they are going to want to share this information with you. License holders and non-license holders can benefit from being PCI compliant. The most obvious benefit is that they will have more secure cardholder data and they will be able to share this information with you. The second benefit is being in compliance with the standards set by Visa, MasterCard, and American Express. This way, you are giving them the authorization to send your payment information as it should not be stored on your servers without someone knowing about it.
How much does it cost to become PCI compliant, and what’s included in that price tag?
It is safe to say that it can cost anywhere from $4,000-$100,000 if a business wants to become compliant. It all depends on the size of the company and how far they want to go. There are fees for nearly every aspect of security and technology that needs to be added into a PCI compliant environment. The benefits of being compliant include:
Reviews, inspections and audits of the business- this is done to ensure the company and employees they care about are safe and secure.
Security training of all employees- this ensures all employees are trained on how to use technology and in turn how to protect that information. The best companies are proactive in making sure their staffs are well versed and trained on how to use technology properly.
New technology- implementing new technology into the business is almost a requirement if they want to become compliant. This can cost not only in money but also time as well. New systems and policies may have to be brought into effect in order for the company to become compliant.
How long does the process take, and what’s involved in becoming compliant?”
It varies a lot by each business. Some businesses can be compliant in less than a year, while others will take longer. There are quite a few reasons as to why different companies take different amounts of time, but it is important to keep in mind that the more you invest, the better your business will be and the more secure it will be. Some businesses will try out a paid assessment to see where they are before they commit to being certified. This can give businesses a good idea of where their vulnerabilities are, and how much work will need to be done to get them compliant. Additionally, it can give insight as to what level is most relevant for their business.
The process itself isn’t long. The PCI Standards require that anyone doing Visa or MasterCard transactions must be compliant by June 30th 2006 at the latest (although many businesses have already gone beyond that date). Usually, when a business decides to become compliant they will get an outside auditor to do an assessment and make sure that the business is up to date. They will then develop a plan of how they are going to fix those vulnerabilities. After that, they will be certified as ‘PCI Compliant’.