Half a century ago all businesses needed to worry about when it came to theft was to secure their premises with a guard or lock. Fast forward to 2021, businesses are no longer limited to just physical places but exist virtually and can be accessed and breached from anywhere at any time via multiple devices and methods. This has forced businesses to adapt and prioritise data security.
In our previous blogs, we outline what is PCI DSS, why it's crucial for secure financial transactions, and the PCI DSS requirements for businesses. Now let's look at some of the key benefits that make compliance with this standard a must-have for businesses.
Benefits of PCI DSS Compliance
Builds trust with customers
Everyone knows someone who has fallen prey to a security breach that has led to them losing credit card data. Nowadays the words ‘cyber attack’ have become commonplace in news reports. One of the biggest fears of every customer shopping, whether it is online or in store, is having their credit card details stolen. By being PCI compliant your organization is meeting the international standard for secure payment, thus building trust amongst customers, which is a valuable asset to your business as it directly leads to more sales.
Reduces overall data breaches
By following the steps to becoming PCI compliant for example, having stronger firewalls and encryption and limits on retaining cardholder data, you become a much harder and less valuable target for cyber criminals. Hackers will struggle to get past your security and will not find what they are looking for thus reducing overall data breaches.
Improves brand reputation, giving your organization a competitive edge
Technology has drastically reduced the barriers of entry, leading to a highly competitive market regardless of the good or service your organization is providing. Being PCI compliant helps your business stand out from the competition. Your high-security standards will increase your overall brand reputation amongst customers as they realise that you have put effort towards safeguarding their sensitive information.
Is a good stepping stone towards other regulations
Being PCI compliant whether that be level 1, 2, 3 or 4 is a sign that your organization has taken serious steps towards safeguarding customer data. The steps that it takes to become PCI compliant are in line with achieving other internationally recognised data security standards like ISO or EU’s GDPR.
Imparts a mindset of security
The 12 requirements of PCI DSS are a robust and comprehensive framework for evaluating your current security procedures and policies. The self-assessment questionnaires do a great job of addressing how merchants can improve their security posture and expose vulnerabilities that need to be looked at. PCI DSS is a great first step towards cyber security for organizations that are just beginning to prioritise information security.
How to Ensure PCI DSS Coompliance
Now that you know the benefits of PCI DSS, you can work towards getting compliant. However, the journey doesn’t stop her. Continuous effort is required if you want to maintain your compliance. The good news is here are five key ways your organization can maintain PCI DSS Compliance:
- Secure your computer network - maintain secure computer networks by segmenting your network into smaller parts and using firewalls which helps improve the security and performance of your network.
- Conduct security checks & annual assessments - make sure you are conducting security checks on a regular basis. Assigning someone the responsibility of making sure your antivirus software is up to date and carrying out scans of the external network in the hopes of eliminating any vulnerabilities are important ways of maintaining PCI DSS Compliance.
- Password management - ensure passwords are being updated regularly, unique and not shared amongst employees.
- Audit your system access - make sure you know who has access to your systems and that employees have the lowest level of access to systems as is required to complete their responsibilities/role in the organization.
- Employee cybersecurity training - every employee in your organization needs to be well informed on PCI and data security best practices, this re-emphasises that it is everyone's responsibility to maintain compliance with PCI DSS standards.
It is important to remember that accepting card payments is a privilege not a right and it shouldn’t be taken lightly, getting PCI DSS compliant is the first step, while maintaining compliance is the rest of the journey! Make sure your organization is doing everything it can to protect itself, it’s customers and it’s right to accept credit card payments.
Is your business looking to get PCI DSS compliant? StickmanCyber's PCI DSS compliance service deploys a 5-step methodology to help you build trust with your customers and guarantee secure transactions with PCI DSS Compliance.