PCI Standards: What You Need to Do to Be Compliant

In an era when security breaches are a daily occurrence — such as the recent data compromise on Reddit systemsTCM bank, and more — it sounds right to have a secure infrastructure to store sensitive information. With the rise of credit card fraud, it's frustrating to realize your credit card information may have been compromised.

In 2018, it was reported that credit card data was stolen from about 5 million customers from Saks and Lord & Taylor. From a consumer’s perspective, dealing with such a compromise is time-consuming. This is because many people maintain a large number of secure individual online profiles that provide a convenient way to deal with recurring monthly or annual payments.

But how can you ensure that the online service you have trusted to safeguard your credit card details are taking the necessary steps to secure it? This is the aim of Payment Card Identity Data Security Standards (PCI DSS), and every vendor should learn how to establish PCI standards and remain compliant.  

Learn how to explore the key PCI standards, including compliance requirements, and how your company can implement them:

What are PCI Standards?

Businesses that transact using credit cards must comply with PCI DDS standards, as mandated by the card brands and administered by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC). This is a recognized set of guidelines created to improve the safety of credit card transactions, as well as prevent the misuse of personal information.

Initially, a product of Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover, the PCI DSS have gone through a series of improvements to ensure online users have the right systems and processes to prevent a data breach.

The PCI security standards outline 12 requirements for compliance that must be met by any organization that deals with payment cards, such as debit and credit cards. Failure to meet these requirements may lead to hefty fines or termination of credit card privileges.

Here are the PCI DSS requirements:

  • Protect critical cardholder information and data information by installing and preserving a firewall configuration
  • Avoid using vendor-supplied defaults setting for your systems and create strong passwords and other effective security measures
  • Protect stored cardholder information
  • Encrypt cardholder data across all networks 
  • Install and update antivirus software
  • Create secure network systems and applications
  • Allocate a unique identity to every user with computer access
  • Ensure the cardholder access is limited by business need-to-know
  • Restrict access to cardholder’s information
  • Track and report any access to cardholder data and network resources
  • Conduct regular tests on security systems
  • Create a policy to deal with data security for your business

What are PCI Standards in UCaaS, CCaaS, and VoIP?

Unified communications as a service (UCaaS) is a cloud service model that offers a variety of telecom or communication software applications and services. The core technology used requires a robust infrastructure with detailed expertise in several security disciplines, including PCI security standards compliance and cybersecurity.

Contact Centre-as-a-Service (CCaaS) allows traders and other organizations to access the right technology needed to run an advanced center without making any significant investment in infrastructure.

Contact centers offer customers flexible services that they need at a relatively low cost. When a business decides to adopt CCaaS model, it is important to outsource PCI compliance to a fully hosted secured cloud solution provider to ensure all the obligations are met while keeping the costs of compliance down.

In this case, key customer authentication data, specifically the three-digit CAV2/CVV2/CVC2/CID, should not be captured or retained once the transaction is complete. Similarly, if call recording is being used, then the recording platform should not capture the part of the call where the customers are providing payment details using a debit or credit card.

PCI DSS also apply to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP),  especially when it is involved in transmitting sensitive authentication (SAD) or cardholder data (CHD) using VoIP data or audio/video recording packets.

How to Achieve PCI DSS For Your Business

Like any system that hosts sensitive corporate information, the PCI DSS features general data security key practices. Most non-compliance issues occur when a business lacks skilled IT personnel, and they can discover that their internal hosting is insecure and prone to hackers.

To comply with PCI DSS, here are three key steps to follow:

Assess: Conduct an audit for the cardholder data you are in charge of, gather an inventory of the IT assets and business processes for the card payment, then analyze them for susceptible items that could expose the cardholder data.

Remediate: Prioritize the vulnerabilities and fix them in sequence. Avoid storing cardholder data at all unless you need to. When there is an opportunity to store cardholder data by a competent external organization instead of your own company, take it since it will help you attain PCI security compliance faster.

Report: Compile and present the necessary validation records, including compliance reports to acquire the bank and card brands you intend to use in your business.

It's a complex process to achieve and maintain PCI compliance, especially with the evolving rules in PCI DSS. So, as a self-hosted merchant, it's important to get all the necessary requirements and be prepared to keep up with future developments. 

When it comes to security, 8x8 provides reliable and compliant cloud solutions at a demanding level rarely seen by other cloud providers. Don't take your chances with a subpar cloud-based telecom system. Call 1-866-879-8647 or fill out our online form to request a no-obligation quote from an 8x8 Product Specialist.

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