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Wednesday, October 15, 2014
What is PCI Compliance?
Photo credit: StormKatt,
Flickr Creative Commons

If you have ever made a purchase via the Internet or telephone, you have had contact with PCI Compliance. If your business has ever accepted a credit card via the Internet or telephone, you have promised your consumer PCI Compliance. PCI Compliance: even if you are unsure what it is, the fact is you and your customers should want it.

What is PCI Compliance?

Launched in 2006, the PCI Compliance is the short-form way of referring to The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard. This standard requires that all companies that process, store, or transmit credit card information maintain a secure environment for this information. There are different levels of PCI Compliance, but all merchants fall into at least one of the levels based on a 12-month business period. The PCI Compliance rule also applies to you no matter if you accept credit cards via the Internet or over the phone. Even if you are using a third-party processor, you are expected to give your customers standards that fit PCI Compliance.

Why PCI Compliance Matters

Because PCI Compliance is expected of your business, whether you are handling the credit card information yourself or not, it is important to choose companies to work with who value your customers privacy as much as you do. For example, Customer Elation's answering service ensures that all relevant data about your customers is secure. Besides complying with the PCI Standard, Customer Elation also promises that customer information is compliant with the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act. Security is important for your current and future business endeavors; just one incident of insecurity within your system can have a lasting negative affect on your company’s reputation (just take a look at Target's situation). Make sure your company trusts the people they are working with. Creating a safe environment for your customer’s credit card information is a simple way to secure your continue success as a business.

If you have any more questions about PCI Compliance, take a look at the PCI Compliance Guide.