Anyone who’s about to go into business for themselves needs to think about whether or not they’ll be accepting electronic payment, especially whether or not they’ll be processing payments remotely using the internet. Businesses that do this (and we’re talking about any business that provides online merchant services) need to meet the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). This standard for online credit card processing safety was created by an independent body founded by the major payment card companies, including Visa, American Express and Mastercard. When it comes to implementing these rigorous security standards, the job of assessment and education falls to PCI compliance companies.
PCI compliance companies specialize in analyzing the data security of different businesses, often through a few different methods depending on how they process their payments. Credit card processing companies rely on PCI compliance companies to certify that they’re ready to do business safely, and to coach them about how to improve their security practices.
Accepting credit card payments or otherwise processing credit cards online can be risky businesses. Data thieves are always inventing new and ingenious ways to access secure payment information and use if for their own purposes. PCI compliance companies are responsible for testing your preparedness should your company have to protect its customers from this sort of invasion and theft.
Not every company that does businesses online falls in to the same DSS category. There are actually four different “levels” of businesses recognized by the PCI SSC organization, depending on the total number of Visa transactions processed by a company over a one year period. Pci compliance companies will, among other things, make sure that you’ve examined and submitted your transaction records to determine into which category your company falls, and exactly which standards they’ll be expected to meet. The PCI SCC expects ALL companies that process online payments to already meet this standard, or to meet it as soon as possible, so don’t let your businesses run afoul of these regulations when help and certification from PCI compliance companies is just a phone call away.