Like any business owner, you care about growing your business while protecting your customers confidential information. PCI is a security standard for organizations that handle branded credits cards designed to protect them from major card schemes and safeguards your customer’s private data.
No, you aren’t legally required to meet PCI compliance. But, with the number of data breaches in the U.S. jumping 29 percent in the first half of 2017, it’s critical that you protect yourself and your customers by meeting the standards.
Many business owners are unsure of how to become PCI compliant, but often feel too intimidated to start. Becoming PCI compliant doesn’t need to be painful, just follow these four steps:
- Determine Your Compliance Level
To figure out which level of PCI compliance your business falls under, collect data on how many transactions are done through your organization with every major credit card brand.
- Take the PCI DSS Self-Assessment Questionnaire
The PCI DSS Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) is a set of documents containing questions based on the requirements of PCI that you’ll answer “yes” or “no” to. This step is crucial to identifying the missing pieces of your payment security.
- Complete a Formal Attestation of Compliance
After bridging the gaps in your payment security, the next step is to fill out a formal attestation of compliance (AOC). This claims your business is compliant with all relevant PCI standards. Once you complete the AOC, you can have a qualified security assessor review your findings and create a report on your compliance.
- Submit Your Documents
The final step in your PCI compliance journey is submitting your filled SAQ and AOC documents to your bank, as well as the major card issuing companies.
After completing these four crucial steps, an external Qualified Security Assessor (QSA) creates a Report on Compliance (ROC). For businesses handling large amounts of transactions they will also perform a PCI compliance audit.
More and more business leaders are taking PCI compliance seriously, but 80 percent of organizations are still not entirely compliant. Utilize [MSP]’s PCI compliance solutions to join the growing number of responsible businesses who are fully protecting their clients and their bottom line.