PCI Compliance security standards were created for one simple reason: to better protect businesses that accept credit cards (and the customers making those payments) from data breaches. But what’s simple in theory, can be complex in delivery.

Being PCI compliant for businesses that accept credit cards isn’t an option, nor should businesses think about compliance as a one-time task that can be checked off a list. Following PCI DDS (Payment Card Industry Data Security) Standards requires continually staying up-to-date with the latest security protocols in the marketplace.

Of course, there is no easy button for following PCI Compliance standards, but there is a way to streamline the process in a way that makes it less cumbersome for your business.

 

Choose the Right Payments Processing Partner

The first step in ensuring you’re following PCI Compliance security requirements is onboarding a payment processing partner that has the expertise to keep your business up to date. Payline, for example, will work with your business to get it compliant without interrupting your everyday flow.

According to the PCI Compliance Security Standards Council: “Following PCI security standards is just good business. Such standards help ensure healthy and trustworthy payment card transactions for the hundreds of millions of people worldwide that use their cards every day.”

At Payline, we realize it takes a team to protect payments — and safeguarding your payments is a bigger task than any one business or individual should tackle alone. This includes offering leading security solutions to protect cardholder data to prevent security breaches that have the potential to cut deep into your bottom line.

What’s important to remember is that being PCI compliant isn’t a one-time task; staying compliant is an ongoing process. But that doesn’t mean it has to be complicated. Once your business completes PCI Compliance requirements, it’s simply about maintaining that status.

 

How To Maintain PCI Compliance Security Standards

If you aren’t following proper security standards, you risk opening your business up to many expensive problems, including: lost sales, customer churn, fraud losses, increased compliance costs, legal costs, fines and penalties and risk losing the ability to accept credit cards all together. Or worse: going out of business.

That’s why the PCI Security Standards Council provides the following security framework for your business to follow:

  • Make sure your wireless router is password-protected and uses encryption.
  • Use strong passwords and change them frequently. Change passwords defaults on hardware and software.
  • Regularly check PIN entry devices and PCs to make sure no one has installed unsafe software or ‘skimming’ devices.
  • Buy and use only approved PIN entry devices at your points-of-sale.
  • Do not store any sensitive cardholder data in computers or on paper —  and educate your employees about  security and protecting cardholder data.
  • Use a firewall on your network and PCs.
  • Buy and use only validated payment software at your POS or online store.

Ready to protect your business? Following PCI Compliance standards are just the first steps. But with a partner like Payline, your business can be equipped with the right tools and solutions to ensure your business and your customers’ data is protected — from end to end.

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Anna Lothson is a content contributor for Payline Data. She previously wrote for PYMNTS.com, as a Sr. Content Producer, where she focused on financial services and payments innovation, fraud and security, emerging payments, and FinTech news, research and thought-leadership content across the payments industry.