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23 August 2021 | Reading Time: 2 minutes

PCI Compliance – What is it and why is it so important?

What is PCI compliance? PCI stands for payment card industry. It sounds complicated but put simply, it refers to the standards that a business must meet in order to protect the credit card data of their customers that is provided to them through card processing transactions. 

The guidelines that a business must meet are provided by the PCI Standards Council. Many of these you will have had hammered into your head and will already be second nature to you, such as knowing to not record someone’s card details over the phone. These requirements that must be met are known as the payment card industry data security standards (PCI DSS). The six main requirements are:

  • Build and maintain a secure network and system
  • Protect cardholder data
  • Maintain a vulnerability management program
  • Implement strong access control measures
  • Regularly monitor and test networks
  • Maintain an information security policy

You’re probably now thinking that it’s obvious as to why being in compliance with these is important. But rest assured I will take you through these anyway. The first reason, and the most obvious reason, is so that credit card fraud can be avoided. No one wants to wake up and find that someone has used your card details and charged thousands of pounds to your account. According to the Nilson report, global card losses are expected to exceed a whopping $35 billion by the end of 2020! If that isn’t an incentive to make sure your business is in full compliance, then I don’t know what would be!

Another reason why PCI compliance is so crucial is that it will boost your customers’ confidence! If they see that you are in compliance with this then they are much more likely to come to you with their business rather than going to a competitor. Put it this way; would you put your trust into a business where you knew it was possible that your card details could get stolen?  Probably not! If you make it clear to your customers that you are PCI compliant then they know they can put their trust in you.

Here at Everything Answered, we regularly take payments on behalf of our client’s customers. Because of this, we make sure that we are well within the guidelines of PCI compliance. Just one of the ways that meet the criteria is by maintaining a strict information security policy, meaning that you know your personal details are safe with us. Just another reason why our clients “wouldn’t hesitate to recommend” us!

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