What is PCI Compliance Certification?

Updated: Feb 27


The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) is a set of requirements and best practices for increasing payment account data security for businesses. The guidelines were established by the PCI Security Standards Council, which was founded by a group of companies within the credit card industry, with the goal of facilitating a global, industry-wide implementation of standard data security practices.


By achieving PCI Compliance, you reduce the risk of a costly breach of your customers’ payment card data. In addition, the payment card companies require that any business that processes payment cards must validate their compliance with PCI DSS.


What is PCI Compliance Certification?

PCI Compliance Certification or simply ‘PCI Certification’ provides an indication that your business has adopted the PCI compliance regulations or PCI DSS. In order to earn certification, both the administrative and technology pieces of your business process must adhere to the requirements. Given that both internal and external factors can present a threat to the safety of credit card information, your customers must be protected in all situations, even in the event of technical failures. By achieving PCI certification, you are signaling to your customers that your business is doing everything it can to protect their personal and private information.


How do I Achieve PCI Compliance Certification for my Business?

Earning your PCI Compliance Certification calls for the completion of a number of actions that an auditor will then assess to determine whether or not your business is approved for PCI certification.


Build and Maintain a Secure Network

Most businesses are either in a position of needing to build a secure network from the bottom up or are trying to secure an existing network (which can be more challenging). In either case, you are required to regularly test your firewall and maintain network privacy. You must be able to foresee potential challenges you could encounter and then develop fixes to them.


Protect Cardholder Data

Your cardholder data must be stored securely in order to achieve PCI certification. Some companies choose not to store cardholder data, which makes them less likely to be targeted by hackers and simplifies their PCI certification process.


Implement a Vulnerability Management Program

To meet the certification requirements, your IT team must utilize and update your anti-virus software on a regular basis. Frequently software updates can help protect your data against changes that tend to occur over time. It helps to follow the news to know the changes you may need to make.


Apply Firm Access Control Measures

You must also be able to explain who, how, and why people have access to various tiers of data. Any person who is granted access must require that access and should have a unique ID to trace to them specifically. These accounts must adhere to PCI best security practices.


Implement an Information Security Policy

Develop a thorough policy that includes all technology uses, reviews and updates procedures, audits, and other administrative tasks.


Leverage eLearning to Meet Employee PCI Training Requirements

Organizations that accept or process credit cards and payment cards must implement a PCI security awareness training program (delivered annually) as part of their overall PCI compliance program as required by PCI DSS 3.2 (Req. 12.6.1). The program should provide awareness and understanding of the basic requirements of PCI - DSS to your point-of-sale, retail, and frontline employees. It must be designed to help them protect cardholder data.


In recent years, as online technologies have continued to evolve, more and more organizations are now leveraging online learning or ‘eLearning’ as the cornerstone approach for the employee training aspect of meeting PCI compliance certification.


If your organization is considering the use of eLearning to train your employees on PCI compliance, some of the benefits you can expect will include:


Cost-Effectiveness

eLearning reduces, or even eliminates, many of the expenses associated with traditional, classroom-based training, such as travel, instructor and venue fees, meals, and the distribution of printed materials. And with eLearning, there is no lost productivity cost as your workers can conduct their training activities during breaks or after hours.


Convenience

Unlike classroom-based training, eLearning allows your employees to conduct their training activities at any time and from any location they choose. All that is required is an Internet connection. This level of convenience helps support a productive learning experience.


Self-Paced

One of the unfortunate challenges of classroom-based training is the need for all students to keep pace with the instructor. eLearning eliminates this by allowing your students to learn at their own pace. They can even revisit important or challenging learning materials multiple times before moving on to the next section.


Communication and Collaboration

Many eLearning platforms now offer tools that support online communication among students and between students and instructors. These tools help to create a supportive learning environment while providing a streamlined method for collecting user feedback.


Data Collection and Analysis

eLearning allows you to quickly and easily collect important data regarding user engagement and success. The analysis of this data can be extremely valuable as you work to expand and improve your PCI compliance training over time.


LMS Portal for PCI Compliance Certification Training

LMS Portals provides a cloud-based platform that will allow your organization to develop and deliver your PCI Compliance Certification Training for employees on your own branded eLearning portal. Our system includes powerful supporting tools for online communication, social media management, reporting and analysis, and more.

Contact us to discuss running your PCI Certification Compliance Training

on your own branded portal. Get started for free!

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