The Internet emerged as a new market place and has become a sensational and valuable tool for businesses of all sizes. As the Internet era began to reach maturity, companies that chose to leverage its power began bringing their payment processing systems online, connecting them wirelessly to both their physical and virtual terminals. Enjoying the ease of online payments modes, consumers grew more comfortable using credit cards to make purchases both online and off. To secure the consumer’s data, The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) made its inception.
What is consumer’s credential data?
Credential data of cardholder or payment data covers information such as the full primary account number (PAN), the cardholder’s name, and the credit card service code and expiration date. Merchants are also responsible for protecting sensitive authentication data in the magnetic-stripe data (e.g., CAV2, CVC2, CVV2, CID, PINs, PIN blocks, and more).
Credentials and its security:
It’s important to secure the entire payment life cycle, from credit card acceptance to payment processing, by protecting cardholder data where it is captured at the point of sale and as it flows into the payment system to your merchant account.
To help with managing compliance standards, the payment brands also established the PCI Security Standards Council. PCI Compliance helps in securing the data and curbing menace оf credit card data theft, internationally. It translates the environment for customers and businesses into a safer zone. However, the PCI Compliance is a quarterly affair, which means one has to seek validation of the PCI compliance еvеrу year.
How are credentials at threat?
Credential Theft is the term heard more and more frequently these days as data breaches at merchants like TJX, parent of TJMaxx, and payment processors Heartland Payment Systems and RBS WorldPay land millions of card records in the hands of hackers. Criminals are using the data to make purchases and withdraw money from accounts of unsuspecting victims who did nothing wrong; they just owned a card. Don’t let your customer’s suffer!
What if you don’t comply with PCI standards?
According to PCI Security Standards, failing to comply with PCI standards and resulting data breaches you could be highly Penalized.
Penalties are not highly publicized, but they can be destructive for businesses.
Aside from the financial cost and reputational damages, there are also other potential liabilities that could affect your business, to list few of them-
- Lost confidence, so customers go to other merchants
- Diminished sales
- Cost of reissuing new payment cards
- Fraud losses
- Higher subsequent costs of compliance
- Legal costs, settlements, and judgments
- Fines and penalties
- Termination of ability to accept payment cards
- Lost jobs (CISO, CIO, CEO, and dependent professional positions)
- Going out of business
And being a merchant, one has to be really very cautious of the security, because these days consumers are a step ahead in acknowledging any threats. If they find out merchant is not protecting their data, credit card data or personal data, they’re going to walk away. And that’s going to be the downfall of any profitable business.
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