PCI DSS explained: Requirements, fines, and steps to compliance

Accounts with administrative access are often referred to as “superuser”, “root”, “administrator”, “admin”, “sysadmin” or “supervisor-state”, depending on the particular operating system and organizational structure. The RFC process is an avenue for PCI SSC stakeholders to provide feedback on existing and new PCI security standards and programs. To safeguard sensitive cardholder data, organizations must employ encryption for stored information, rendering it indecipherable to potential threats. Qualys Web Application Scanning (WAS) – WAS is included with Total Compliance and continuously detects vulnerabilities and misconfigurations of CDE internal and external-facing web applications (Req. 6, 11).

Created and overseen by an independent agency, the PCI Security Standards Council (PCI SSC), PCI DSS is designed to improve the security of payment card transactions and to reduce credit card fraud. Sometimes referred to as “payment gateway” or “payment service provider (PSP)”. Entity engaged by a merchant or other entity to handle payment card transactions on their behalf. While payment processors typically provide acquiring services, payment processors are not considered acquirers unless defined as such by a payment card brand.

Wireless protocol using short-range communications technology to facilitate transmission of data over short distances. Acronym for “Approved Scanning Vendor.” Company approved by the PCI SSC to conduct external vulnerability scanning services. Don’t miss the opportunity to collaborate and learn about the latest developments in global payment security and in the PCI Security Standards. Continuous monitoring and comprehensive logging of network access play a pivotal role in early threat detection and swift response. Security Assessment Questionnaire – SAQ, included with Total Compliance, allows you to document and generate proof of compliance with detailed reports for auditors and executives. Qualys recently published a white paper explaining how we can put you in the driver’s seat for compliance with the revised standard.

Unlike other scanners, it performs authenticated scans, such as for certificate inventory. One of these is enabling automatic documentation of compliance – basically, a status check of whether many of the controls for PCI DSS 4.0 requirements are in place and whether they are doing their respective jobs. Second, with various integrated Qualys security applications such as VMDR, Web Application Scanning, and others, the platform also provides specific controls for a robust subset of PCI DSS 4.0 requirements.

Join Us! Become an Associate Participating Organization

Regional Engagement Boards serve as advisors to the PCI SSC on payment data security issues in specific geographies and markets. This input is crucial to reflect industry needs and challenges and continue to keep global payments safe. Every organization will have a somewhat different take on who should lead its PCI compliance team, based on its structure and size. Very small businesses who have outsourced most of their payment infrastructures to third parties generally can rely on those vendors to handle PCI compliance as well.

Additional default accounts may also be generated by the system as part of the installation process. Screen and keyboard which permits access and control of a server, mainframe computer or other system type in a networked environment. Also referred to as “data compromise,” or “data breach.” Intrusion into a computer system where unauthorized disclosure/theft, modification, or destruction of cardholder data is suspected.

In an increasingly cashless commercial landscape, security standards need to be established for handling payment data. Standards that are uniform regardless of the payment card company, or the nation in which the transaction takes place. As such, Visa, MasterCard, Discover Financial Services, JCB International and American Express came together in 2004 to do just that. PCI DSS is more than just about cardholder data; it extends to protecting any sensitive data within an organization.

  • PCI ASV Compliance  – As an Approved Scanning Vendor (ASV), Qualys has been authorized by the PCI Security Standards Council to conduct the quarterly scans required to show compliance with PCI DSS.
  • You’ll want to create a comprehensive map of the systems, network connections, and applications that interact with credit card data across your organization.
  • Also referred to as “data compromise,” or “data breach.” Intrusion into a computer system where unauthorized disclosure/theft, modification, or destruction of cardholder data is suspected.
  • Qualys PC can now automatically scan for all these PCI controls and provide a detailed report to validate ongoing compliance.

Maintaining payment security is required for all entities that store, process or transmit cardholder data. Guidance for maintaining payment security is provided in PCI security standards. These set the technical and operational requirements for organizations accepting or processing payment transactions, and for software developers and manufacturers of applications and devices used in those transactions. If an organization handles or stores credit card data, it needs to define the scope of its cardholder data environment (CDE).

Acronym for “system development life cycle.” Phases of the development of a software or computer system that includes planning, analysis, design, testing, and implementation. Acronym for “Self-Assessment Questionnaire.” Reporting tool used to document self-assessment results from an entity’s PCI DSS assessment. S-FTP has the ability to encrypt authentication information and data files in transit.

Non-consumer or consumer customer to whom a payment card is issued to or any individual authorized to use the payment card. Vulnerability that is created from insecure coding methods, where a program overruns the buffer’s boundary and writes data to adjacent memory space. Buffer overflows are used by attackers to gain unauthorized access to systems or data.

Step-by-step guide to PCI DSS v3.2.1 compliance

With the advent of PCI DSS 4.0, MRC and TokenEx expert John Noltemeyer joined forces to present a webinar highlighting everything merchants need to know about the upcoming changes. While there is not necessarily a regulatory mandate for PCI compliance by law, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is responsible for credit card processing, as it falls under the need for consumer protections. The FTC does mandate parts of PCI compliance protocols through court precedent in order to stop unfair, deceptive or fraudulent practices in the marketplace. PCI compliance standards require merchants to consistently adhere to the PCI Standards Council’s guidelines known as the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS).

How Qualys Drives PCI DSS 4.0 Compliance

To improve the safety of consumer data and trust in the payment ecosystem, a minimum standard for data security was created. Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Discover, and JCB formed the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) in 2006 to administer and manage security standards for companies that handle credit card data. Before the PCI SSC was established, these five credit card companies all had their own security standards programs—each with roughly similar requirements and goals. They banded together through the PCI SSC to align on one standard policy, the PCI Data Security Standards (known as PCI DSS) to ensure a baseline level of protection for consumers and banks in the internet era. The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is one of the oldest mainstream requirements for compliance, originating in 2004.

Who must comply with the PCI DSS?

Algorithm for public-key encryption described in 1977 by Ron Rivest, Adi Shamir, and Len Adleman at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); letters RSA are the initials of their surnames. Type of malicious software that when installed without authorization, is able to conceal its presence and gain administrative control of a computer system. https://1investing.in/ Acronym for “Report on Compliance.” Report documenting detailed results from an entity’s PCI DSS assessment. Media that store digitized data and which can be easily removed and/or transported from one computer system to another. Examples of removable electronic media include CD-ROM, DVD-ROM, USB flash drives and external/portable hard drives.

Acronym for “Structured Query Language.” Computer language used to create, modify, and retrieve data from relational database management systems. Type of malicious software that when installed, intercepts or takes partial control of the user’s computer without the user’s consent. A method by which two or more entities separately have key components that individually convey no knowledge of the resultant cryptographic key. Acronym for “Simple Network Management Protocol.” Supports monitoring of network attached devices for any conditions that warrant administrative attention. Set of laws, rules, and practices that regulate how an organization manages, protects, and distributes sensitive information.

A Customer’s credit rating can be negatively affected, which could lead to enormous personal fallout. Customer facing businesses and financial institutions lose credibility (and in turn, business) and they are also subject to numerous financial liabilities as a result of theft of cardholder data. Therefore, compliance to PCI DSS is mandated by the International Card Payment Schemes worldwide. PCI-DSS is not merely a compliance checklist; it’s a comprehensive security framework that, when diligently followed, forms a formidable defense against data breaches. By understanding and adhering to its core requirements and controls, organizations can protect the confidentiality and integrity of payment card data. Payment card industry (PCI) compliance helps ensure the security of each one of your business’s credit card transactions.

Refer to the QSA Qualification Requirements for details about requirements for QSA Companies and Employees. Acronym for “personal data assistant” or “personal digital assistant.” Handheld mobile devices with capabilities such as mobile phones, e-mail, or web browser. Acronym for “Operationally Critical Threat, Asset, and Vulnerability Evaluation. ”A suite of tools, techniques, and methods for risk-based information security strategic assessment and planning.

If you’re interested in finding out more about the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard and how to ensure compliance for your business, then get in touch with our financial experts. Discover how GoCardless can help you with ad hoc payments or recurring payments. Level 3 compliance applies to merchants that process anywhere from 20,000 to one million e-commerce transactions per year.

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