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PCI Compliance

Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards

What is PCI?

Each year, compromised cardholder account data becomes a larger concern for all businesses in the payment industry. Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express and other major card brands have come together to form The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC). The council has created a set of mandatory requirements for all merchants to adhere to in order to protect the business from losses due to credit card information, whether they are using manual or computerized credit card processing solutions. E-commerce websites and POS devices that process information over the Internet are subject to the most demanding PCI assessments due to the heightened risk of online data interception.

Frequently Asked Questions:
Who is at risk for card data compromises?

  • Any business, large or small, that accepts cards as a form of payment is a target for card data compromises.

How do card data breaches occur?

There are many ways a card data breach can occur, most commonly:
  • Malware that is installed on the computer that captures card data information.
  • Skimming devices that capture magnetic strip information (Card data).

Why do I need to comply?

  • Card data compromises due to compliance failure could result in severe fines from Visa/MC/Disc/Amex to the business.

How do I know if my business stores card data?

  • Contact our Business Services Department at (360) 647-4420 to verify that your terminal or POS system is a PCI compliant solution.

What are some measures I can take to prevent a data compromise?

  • Buy and use only approved PIN entry devices at your points-of-sale.
  • Buy and use only validated payment software at your POS or website shopping cart.
  • Do not store any sensitive card holder data in computers or on paper unless absolutely necessary by your business.
  • Use a firewall on your network and PCs.
  • Ensure patches are up to date.
  • Utilize an antivirus software.
  • Make sure your wireless router is password-protected and uses encryption, turn off remote access when not needed.
  • Use strong passwords, be sure to change default passwords on hardware and software OFTEN.
  • Regularly check PIN entry devices and PCs to make sure on one has installed rogue software or a skimming device.
  • Stay educated about card data breaches, precautions you can take and PCI standards.
  • Teach your employees about security and protecting cardholder data.

For more information on PCI requirements visit, or contact our Business Services Department at (360) 647-4420.


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