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Are you PCI Compliant?
Monday, November 12, 2018

Walmart. Macy’s. Whole Foods. Delta. It seems like there are reports of a new credit card breach every week. While the largest data breaches are the ones that make headlines, the reality is that it's the nation's smaller merchants who are most vulnerable.  

If Walmart, one of the nation's largest retailers with 4000+ U.S. stores, is vulnerable, what can small and medium-sized businesses and organizations -- who have a fraction of the security resources available -- do? The first step is become PCI-compliant.  

In order to ensure that card and cardholder information is maintained in a secure environment, any entity that accepts credit and debit cards must adhere to an established set of security requirements known as the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (www.pcisecuritystandards.org). Following these guidelines and becoming compliant involves a system-wide examination of how card and cardholder data is handled within your organization. After the self-examination, remedial security protection measures can be put into place.

Because employee and contractor errors are a major cause of data breaches, security training should also be completed. Look beyond your employees to your outside vendors, such as website hosting companies, IT consultants and security system providers. Something as simple as having an open port on a security camera can provide an opportunity for a hacker.  

Finally, once your processes and systems are secure, keep them that way. Institute regular system scans from a certified Approved Scanning Vendor (ASV) to detect potential system entry points. Quarterly scans are recommended as a best practice.  

Because we realize the importance of data protection, OMEGA Processing provides merchants with an entire suite of fraud security products.  

PCI ToolKit—Tailored to your business needs, the PCI ToolKit provides specific security and compliance solutions, allowing you to reduce risk and focus on your customers.

Data Incident Management Program—A comprehensive suite of services that provide expert assistance if a breach should occur. The Data Incident Management Program will reduce exposure and risk, increase your compliance levels and save you time and money.

Vulnerability Scanning—An automatic quarterly scan of your systems can pinpoint potential vulnerable points of entry and detect cardholder data theft before the breach occurs.

Breach Insurance—Up to $100,000 per incident in insurance protection should your business experience a breach of card/cardholder data.  

Our PCI ToolKit and ASV scanning help you achieve and maintain compliance. And, because it's not a perfect world, our Breach Reporting ToolKit and breach insurance protect you in the unlikely event your system is compromised.  

The world of data protection can be daunting and confusing. Your first inclination as a business owner might be to "stick your head in the sand," and cross your fingers that it doesn't happen to you. Being proactive, however, and becoming PCI compliant is the best way to protect your business and customers from a data breach.

PCI is basically an insurance policy and you’re put in the less risky category if you’re PCI compliant so not only is it safer, it’s cheaper to go through all the security processes. Consistently passing PCI scans just means you’re doing all that you can do to keep card holder data safe so you, as a merchant, are cheaper to ensure, thus pay smaller fees every month. Being PCI compliant doesn’t affect the $100,000 per incident, think of it as being like a lower premium for health insurance because you don’t smoke and eat healthy.

Contact your OMEGA Relationship Specialist today to ask how you can protect your business and become PCI compliant. 



 
 

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