PCI COMPLIANCE AND OUTSOURCED SECURITY
Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS) compliance is a constant struggle. Consumers can now buy products with the wave of their smartphone in a retail store; the number of government regulations for consumer data protection only grows larger; new technology changes in a blink of an eye; and the threat of a data breach is constantly looming. For a small business, it’s even more of a challenge.
Small Business Compliance Challenge
PCI compliance is even more daunting for your small business. Small-business attacks have increased in the last four years. Cyber attackers make it their business to go after small businesses because they know small businesses are easier targets. And the bad guys have powerful weapons: auto-attack software that can hit you with a relentless barrage from anywhere in the world.
Outsourcing Is Cost Effective
Keeping on top of PCI DSS compliance has grown too complex, unwieldy, and expensive for a small- to medium-sized business. Outsourcing provides a number of benefits that cannot be obtained by keeping your security in-house. Yet while outsourcing desktop and infrastructure support is common, outsourcing security is still rare. This is risky because making errors in PCI compliance is expensive. Sure, there have been data breaches at high-profile retailers like Target and Neiman Marcus. But these companies are large enough to absorb any fines. For a small operation, fines that range from $5,000 to $500,000 can put you out of business.
Outsourcing PCI compliance makes it much easier for you to maintain security best practices. Expert security services have the latest protection tools designed specifically for SMBs.
Your Rights Revoked Anytime
Never mind the threat of a network security breach or potential fines; you may be denied the opportunity to offer credit cards at all — a credit card issuer can shut down your account anytime they want, and they typically do it with very little, if any, warning. To avoid this, you must determine whether there are any areas of PCI noncompliance in your operation, the amount of technical resources you will need to address the problems, the changes in your operational and policy guidelines that must be implemented, and the most effective steps to avoid potential future errors.
Communication Is Key
Communication is critical to ward off potential PCI compliance problems. Your management team should work together with experts to develop an effective security plan. Whether you keep your compliance procedures in house or work with outsourcers, productive communication will reduce conflicts and provide seamless security while addressing operational, technical, and legal limitations.