Keeping credit card data secure is a top concern for businesses of all sizes. Not only that, but credit card information isn’t the only thing that’s at stake – the sensitive customer data that is associated with the credit card information is also something that needs safeguarding. That’s exactly why the industry enacted the PCI-DSS regulations – to keep this sensitive information secure.
Businesses, however, often need clarity as to how to remain compliant with these standards. It isn’t a simple matter of visiting the issue of PCI-DSS compliance only once. It is important to make sure that the standards are maintained. Here’s a look at how businesses can secure this sensitive data by following the PCI-DSS regulations that have been set up by the industry:
Analyze Existing Systems
The first phase of staying current with PCI-DSS compliance standards is to assess the current system for vulnerabilities. Take inventory of all IT assets that involve data storage as well as credit card payment process methods. It’s also a good idea to identify all cardholder data that the company has stored as well as the systems that are used to store this data. The goal is to identify existing problems so that they can be addressed.
At this stage, it’s also a good idea to make sure that the firewalls, virus protection software, and servers are all up to date. Out of date equipment and software is much easier for hackers to crack. This is also the time to check if data encryption methods are up to the industry standards.
Once the systems are fully analyzed and the vulnerabilities are identified, the next step is to take action. The first step is to assess what the current PCI-DSS standards are so that they can be enacted. The PCI-DSS Security Council is in place to analyze existing threats and make sure that they update their guidelines accordingly. As a result of that, compliance standards could change throughout the year. Knowing what these changes are can help businesses keep their data safe.
After becoming acquainted with the guidelines, IT departments are well poised to adhere to the guidelines while also addressing the existing security vulnerabilities. This includes installing new firewalls or updating existing ones, updating the anti-virus software, updating other software programs, and making sure that the company’s equipment is up to date. The process of keeping equipment and software current is something that should happen on a regular basis.
Many companies only assess their systems once a year to make sure they remain compliant with PCI-DSS standards. However, compliance is something that needs to be regularly maintained, and only checking once a year can leave sensitive information vulnerable. It is much better to continually check all systems to make sure they are all up to standard. However, businesses are often unsure of how to proceed. Roan Solutions can assist businesses maintain their PCI-DSS compliance standards.