The term PCI is an abbreviation for Payment Card Industry. Retailers and merchants that wish to accept and process card holder data are required to conform to a set of requirements as stipulated by the payment card industry data security standard (PCI DSS).
Payment Card Industry Compliance
Organizations that accept, process and store any card holder data, irrespective of their size or volume of payment transactions, are required to be PCI compliant. The PCI SSC – Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council – was established in 2006 in a bid to administer and manage the PCI DSS.
The necessary requirements outlined by the PCI DSS are to ensure that all payment transactions carried out by merchants are done in a secure manner. It is imperative that merchants meet the requirements in order to offer their customers a safe method of transacting online payments.
Companies that wish to use a third party processor are also required to be PCI compliant as they store individual and companies card details. If your customers pay you directly using a debit or credit card then you must act in accordance with the PCI DSS requirements. Online payment solutions including credit cards, debit cards and pre-paid branded cards are all included within the PCI DSS requirements.
SSL certification and PCI compliance are two different types of safety measures that all online payment transacting merchants are required to obtain. SSL certification indicates that the organization is secure with regards to first tier customer security.
Individuals and companies that wish to attain a PCI compliance certificate are advised to seek the assistance of a professional consultancy firm. Through the advice of experienced consultants, you can ensure that you obtain the necessary certification in a professional and timely manner.