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What is PCI Compliance? Why & How to Get PCI Compliance?

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What is PCI Compliance

The rise of the Internet has helped countless eCommerce businesses pursue unlimited amounts of growth along with limitless consumption ever since geographical limitations have been eliminated.

However, accepting online payments still remains a serious concern for eCommerce businesses because fraudsters are constantly looking to steal customers’ data.

And this is the main reason why eCommerce businesses and even online customers care so much about PCI Compliance.

So what exactly is PCI compliance?

In this post, we’ll discuss the basics of PCI compliance, why do you need to become PCI Compliant, and how to get PCI compliance for your eCommerce business.

What is PCI Compliance?

PCI stands for Payment Card Industry, and as the name suggests, PCI Compliance basically refers to a set of standards & guidelines for online businesses to make sure the top-notch security for their credit card transactions.

In simple words, online businesses need to follow these standards and guidelines in order to manage as well as protect cardholders’ data when making online transactions.

These standards & guidelines were developed by PCI Security Standards Council. And only the businesses that follow these standards & guidelines are considered PCI Compliant.

Why Does Your eCommerce Business Need to be PCI Compliant?

eCommerce has undoubtedly dominated the market over the past years. But along with the eCommerce trend, there has also been a rising concern about the security of customer data, especially when it comes to online payment transactions.

This is where PCI Compliance comes into the picture.

It is critical for an eCommerce business to be PCI compliant for several reasons such as:

  • Being PCI Compliant helps to reduce data breaches. And most importantly, it also helps to protect customers’ data from cyber attacks.
  • Being PCI Compliant helps to avoid fines as you’re already handling customers’ data as securely as possible.
  • It helps to enhance your brand reputation and build trust among customers.
  • It helps to maintain a secure network between your eCommerce business and your customers.
  • Lastly, you’ll be ready to comply with other important standards like SOX, HIPAA, etc. once you achieve PCI Compliance.

Although, PCI Compliance is not mandated by the law. But, it is considered mandatory by court precedent. That means it’s your responsibility to keep customers’ sensitive financial data safe when accepting online payments.

So ultimately, it is kind of necessary to make your eCommerce business PCI Compliant.

Below, we’ll share how to get PCI Compliance for your eCommerce business.

How to Get PCI Compliance?

According to the PCI Compliance Security Standard Council, any business, organization, or company that accepts online payments should become PCI Compliant.

Now usually, most businesses will have to verify their PCI Compliance by hiring a professional assessor to determine if they’re conducting the online transactions correctly or not.

Following are the things you need to make your eCommerce business PCI Compliant.

Define Your PCI Level

First of all, you need to define your PCI level. There are a total of 4 PCI levels which are determined by the number of online transactions your eCommerce business handles each year. This generally affects how you approach PCI DSS Compliance.

Determine Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ)

After that, you need to determine your self-assessment questionnaire by inducing 7 types decided by your merchant level and how your process customers’ credit card information.

Each class here represents different requirements and you’ll need to follow them in order to become PCI compliant.

Build a Secure Network for PCI DSS Certification

Next, you need to build as secure a network as possible to meet the requirements for PCI DSS Certification. This process consists of many things, from vulnerability scanning to security maintenance as well as remediation.

If you’re not sure how to build a secure network, an information technology expert will be required to deal with all the heavy lifting.

Complete the Attestation of Compliance (AOC)

This is basically a document that confirms the results of your PCI DSS assessment.

Overall, the path to becoming PCI Compliant is complex. But, it is definitely worth traveling if you want to establish your reputation in customers’ eyes and safeguard their sensitive information from hackers.

Final Note

PCI Compliance Standards basically apply to all kinds of businesses that accept online payments. Its main goal is to protect sensitive cardholder data.

So, making your eCommerce business PCI compliant is always a good decision. And by doing so, you prove that your business puts the safety of customers’ data first.

With that being said, we hope that you found this post helpful. If you have any questions, please ask them in the comments below.

And if you need our professional assistance, feel free to contact us anytime.

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