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PCI Compliance Explained

Updated: Sep 11, 2019

All businesses that accept credit cards as a form of payment must always follow the PCI standards set by the council. 



Accepting Credit Cards - Be Compliant

PCI Compliance, sometimes seen as PCI DSS Compliant, means that a business meets security standards set by the PCI Security Standards Council.

PCI Compliance is a term that is relevant to businesses that accept credit cards and a vital part of security measures that come along with the subsequent processing. It is essential to understand what it means and why it keeps credit card information secure. 


PCI Compliance, sometimes seen as PCI DSS Compliant, means that a business meets security standards set by the PCI Security Standards Council. The council was formed in 2006 by major payment card brands: American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa, and JCB. The council’s objective is to create an industry-wide standard of credit card security practices to universally preserve the safety of customer data. PCI DSS stands for Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard.


All businesses that accept credit cards as a form of payment must always follow the PCI standards set by the council. 


While PCI DSS is not a written law, it is absolutely mandatory. 

If a business refuses to comply with the standards set by the council then the business will suffer heavy fines ranging from $5,000 to millions to over one hundred million dollars (in extreme cases) in the event of a data breach. Other repercussions of not being compliant include banks increasing their cost of transaction fees or termination of the merchant account. A business also has the possibility of becoming ineligible to obtain another merchant account in the event theirs is terminated and they are placed on the Visa/MasterCard Terminated Merchant File (TMF). The security breach of a non PCI Compliant business can ultimately be damaging enough to ruin the business. 


To establish a compliant business, there is a yearly Self-Assessment Questionnaire and a quarterly PCI Security Scan that both need to yield passing results. When the first two steps have been completed an Attestation of compliance must be submitted. 


Payment processors may offer PCI compliant credit card processing solutions such as data encryption, tokenization or a cloud-based payment gateway such as VyaPay. Choosing a payment processor with these security technologies adds extra transaction protection and can help businesses adhere to PCI standards without any modifications on their end. 


The benefits of following PCI DSS security standards are maximizing protection against a data breach when making credit card transactions. Vulnerability to attacks and data breaches is naturally higher if optimal security measures are not being implemented. Being PCI compliant ensures the maximum security possible for both the customer and business. 


VyaPay is a secure PCI Level 1 payment facilitator gateway that businesses use to process a variety of electronic payments (e.g. VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, ACH, eChecks, international payments, 3DS Secure, 3DSv2) online and in-person. To learn more, contact VyaPay at www.vyapay.com or call 1-833-4-VYAPAY.


#3dsv2 #Payfac #VyaPay #PaymentFacilitator #secureprocessing #securepayments #Authorize.net 

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