Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard

A set of information security protocols that are targeted at reducing fraudulent
payment card transactions.

The protocol set aims to enhance the security layers around cardholder's data. PCI DSS has resulted from the collaboration between multiple payment providers such as Discover, American Express, MasterCard, and Visa. The standard is implemented by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI-SSC).

The PCI-SSC aims to enhance data security standards by providing for and implementing a range of provisions that aim to secure cardholder's data, at all times. The DSS provides the required framework that's needed for the development of a well-rounded payment card data security protocol.

What requiremnets are necessary?

The  12 Requirements

 That Ensure PCI DSS Compliance

Use Of And Maintenance Of Firewalls

Firewalls help to prevent unauthorized access to and from a network. By means of firewalls, providers can protect credit card systems from falling prey to malicious online entities. This makes them an integral part of the PCI DSS compliance.

Appropriate Password Policies

This involves periodically changing the password of devices such as POS terminals, modems, and routers. Also, a device-to-password mapping inventory needs to be maintained for adequate password protection.

Cardholder Data Protection

This requirement specifies that all cardholder data must be protected by means of adequate encryption. Further, encryption keys must also be properly encrypted and stored securely.

Encryption Of Data In-Transit

This specifies that all cardholder data in transit across networks must also be encrypted using the required protection standards.

Adequate Use Of Anti-Virus Software

The use of properly updated and patched antivirus software is one of the essential requirements for the maintenance of card-data security.

Regular Updates

All software systems used in the maintenance and security of card data must be regularly patched and updated. This is essential to maintaining the integrity of the system.

Restricted Access To Card Data

PCI DSS requires that card data is shared only with those sections of the workforce that strictly need access. What's more, the roles and employees that do handle card data need to be carefully documented and vetted.

Individually Unique Access IDs

Further, any and all employees that do handle cardholder data need to have separate login credentials to the system. This is needed to maintain responsibility and adhere to the right accountability measures.

Limited Physical Access

Digital security measures notwithstanding, all cardholder data must be stored in a secure location and be kept under physical lock and key. Furthermore, all access to such data must be logged to maintain strict vigilance.

Systematic Logging Of Access Data

One of the major oversights that take place when accessing cardholder data is the lack of a systematic logging mechanism. PCI DSS requires that each and every access to sensitive cardholder data be logged and recorded for future access.

Regular Tests And Scans

The above ten security measures involve a large number of software systems, physical barriers, and personnel. In general, any of these can spring security leaks at any time. That's why regular security scans and tests are essential to ensure their continued compliance.

Detailed Documentation

Finally, every action that's taken regarding the safety of cardholder data must be documented and stored in a safe location. Detailed documentation is essential for ensuring cardholder security.

The Benefits Of Complying


PCI DSS compliance can seem to be a daunting endeavor at the outset. The sheer number of regulations and standards requiring compliance can seem to be too massive to handle.

However, once begun, compliance can actually be a much-needed aspect of the cardholder data security process.

With the right tools, PCI DSS compliance can have several benefits, some of which are listed below.

Enhanced System Security

PCI DSS compliance ensures that your customer care information is secure. This breeds trust in your business and leads to longtime customer relationships.

Better Market Reputation

PCI DSS compliance enhances your market reputation. This leads to better business relationships and improved partnerships.

Continued System Security

Compliance with the PCI DSS standards ensures that your digital systems remain secure, both in the present and in the future.

Makes Compliance With Other Standards Easier

PCI DSS compliance paves the way for compliance with other data security standards such as HIPAA etc.

Enhanced Infrastructural Efficiency

PCI DSS compliance leads to continuous improvement in your IT infrastructure. This enhances the efficiency and efficacy of the system.

What Non-compliance Can Invite
Lack of compliance with PCI DSS standards can actually invite disastrous outcomes. A business stakes a lot to acquire and hold customers. One single lapse can destroy it all. Compromised cardholder data can negatively impact customers, business partners, and all related stakeholders. Plus, even a single lapse can severely harm your market reputation.

Apart from a massive loss of business and credibility, a lack of compliance can invite a drop in share prices and a plummeting market valuation, not to mention lawsuits and fines.

The above clearly indicates that PCI DSS compliance is essential for the continued success of your business.

Who Needs To Be Compliant With PCI DSS? 
Any and all businesses that deal with sensitive cardholder data must become PCI DSS compliant.

For example, merchants that accept credit and debit card payments, business service providers, and even third-party agencies that have access to card information need to be PCI DSS compliant.

  • You: Involving Security And Protection

    One of the essential requirements for dealing with cyber-fraud is the protection of local SWIFT infrastructure. This can be achieved by utilizing the correct people, practices and policies. To help the industry do just that, SWIFT has created a set of mandatory security controls that are an addition to SWIFT's existing security guidance. These controls take into account up-to-date intelligence on cyber-fraud. What's more, they are also assessed and reviewed by independent industry experts.

  • Your Counterparts: Involving Fraud Detection And Prevention

    It's a fundamental truth of the business ecosystem that no player can operate in isolation. All businesses are part of a community and must be viewed as such. In the same light, SWIFT's users form a major ecosystem, which needs to be protected constantly. Despite having adequate security measures, one can never be fully sure that they are 100% protected against acts of digital villainy. For this reason, it's vital to pay special attention to managing security-related risks when dealing with business associates. This involves taking cognizance of security in case of the self as well as partner institutions.

  • Your Community: Involving Sharing And Preparation

    The global financial industry is one big family. As a result, the cyber challenges it faces are also similar. What befalls a business in one part of the world can be easily replicated in another. That's why in case a business suspects that they have been breached, it's essential that they share all concerns and related information with the SWIFT authorities. What's more, businesses are expected to prepare for all eventualities and act in a timely manner.

Why Select Desh Cyber For PCI DSS Compliance

Desh Cyber has proven experience in handling PCI DSS compliance initiatives. Our compliance experts take care of every facet of your business' data security standards. Through diligent and comprehensive implementation, we can help you become compliant with the PCI DSS standards.

Desh Cyber employs the best cybersecurity practices to ensure that your customer data, payment card information, and related digital assets remain secure. When working with us, you can rest assured that you're getting the best service there is.

Contact us today for a no-obligation discussion.

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