If you are serious about growing your business to greater heights, you need to ensure that your payments systems are secure.
By keeping your payment systems secure, you are protecting your business and safeguarding your customers’ personal information from potential cyber threats and breaches.
To help protect your business against cybercriminals, here are three Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliance tips to secure your business and consumer data.
1. Know What Data to Protect
The first aspect you should consider to ensure PCI compliance is to understand which data is sensitive and needs to be protected.
What qualifies as sensitive data isn’t limited to financial information such as the cardholder’s name and number, but also any information that can be personally identifiable to the individual.
Also, you need to understand how your customers’ data is handled – from the processing stage to storage – the moment they enter your business’ system.
Knowing how and where this information travels can help you keep it protected – such as through encryption – as it transfers from one point to the next.
You also have to keep in mind that the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) requires you to protect consumer data.
2. Avoid Storing Sensitive Data
An excellent security practice when it comes to sensitive data is to avoid storing your customers’ information as much as possible.
You can check the places where your customers’ data travels and determine whether or not it is necessary to store information on each point.
One way of avoiding storing sensitive data is to use software or systems that allow you to charge your customers in real time without having to retain their personal information.
If storing highly sensitive information is unavoidable, then access restrictions for your database should be set in place to help avoid potential data breaches.
You can also assign unique credentials to those who do have access based on their authority level or user function.
3. Manage Vulnerabilities
Having security measures in place, like system firewalls, can be a great way to prevent potential security threats from happening and help you maintain PCI compliance.
Establishing layers of protection can be your defense against data breaches and risks of customer data exposure to cybercriminals, and a firewall can be your first line of defense.
PCI DSS requires that you maintain and develop your security apps and systems.
It’s crucial that you don’t just set up your firewalls and other security software and forget about them.
You also need to do vulnerability checks to help assess any possible security gaps in your system and update your security software regularly.
Additionally, a good practice is to do regular security sweeps of your point-of-sale (POS) machines for any skimming devices or malicious software.
Maintaining PCI compliance helps protect your business interests and your customers’ integrity.
Not only does it help you detect vulnerabilities in your security system to protect from possible threats, but it can also help you establish your company’s credibility.
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