PCI Compliance Australia: How Can PCI-DSS Help in Securing Payment Data?

20/09/2022by minal.metkari0Read: 4 minutes

PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a global security standard that offers a baseline of technical and operational requirements designated to protect payment data. It aims to secure Australian businesses and ensure they adhere to PCI Compliance in Australia. It offers a robust framework to secure the payment system.

PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) was established to promote and enhance cardholder data security and offer the global adoption of consistent data security measures. PCI DSS establishes minimum technical and operational requirements for the protection of account information and to prevent a data breach. Be it a merchant, processor, acquirer, issuer, service provider, seller, or any business involved in payment card processing must comply with PCI DSS. It also applies to all entities that store, process or transmit cardholder data (CHD) and/or sensitive authentication data (SAD).

Introduced in 2006, PCI-DSS compliance aims to manage and improve account security.

PCI-DSS compliance mandates that all vendors who process, store, or transmit data related to the Credit Card, MasterCard, Visa Inc., Debit card, or Cash must adhere to the PCI-DSS standard to safeguard this data.

The purpose of compliance is to ensure a secure environment via payment applications that comply with regulations and do not store restricted data.

PCI compliance in Australia has four levels, each having a distinct validation requirement for businesses. The classification of your business is determined by its annual transaction volume.

PCI DSS v4.0 – The Updated Version

PCI DSS v4.0 is the updated version of the PCI-DSS standard. PCI DSS v3.2.1 will remain active for two years post v4.0 is published. This offers organisations time to become familiar with the new version and plan for and implement the changes needed.

Objectives of PCI DSS v4.0

  • Continue to fulfil the Security Needs of the Payment Industry
  • Document content like feedback received from companies.
  • Promote security as a continuous process
  • Add flexibility for different methodologies
  • Enhance Validation Method

Changes made in PCI DSS v4.0

Many changes have been included in the latest version of the PCI-DSS Standard. Below are some examples of those changes made to the stand.

1) Continual enhancement of the Payments Industry’s Security needs

Security practices must evolve as threats change. The various examples are as follows: expanded multi-factor authentication requirements, enhanced encryption, updated password requirements, new e-commerce, and phishing requirements to address ongoing threats.

2) To promote Security as a Continuous Process

Ongoing security is fundamental to protecting payment data.

For Example, assigned roles and responsibilities for each requirement, additional guidance to help businesses better understand the process of implementing and maintaining security, new reporting options to highlight improvement areas, and provide more transparency for report reviewers.

3) Increase flexibility for Businesses implementing different methods to achieve Security Objectives

Increased flexibility gives businesses more options to achieve a requirement’s objective and supports payment technology innovation.

Allowance of the group shared, and generic accounts and targeted risk analyses empower organisations to establish frequencies for performing certain activities, customised approaches, and a new method to implement and validate PCI DSS requirements, providing another option for organisations using innovative ways to achieve security objectives.

4) Enhance Validation Methods and Procedures

Options like clear validation and reporting support transparency and granularity.

For Example, Increased alignment between information reported in a Report on Compliance or Self-Assessment Questionnaire and information summarised in an Attestation of Compliance.

Who must comply with PCI-DSS?

PCI-DSS compliance is required for any business that processes, stores, or transmits debit, credit, or cash card data. Compliance is required irrespective of the Company’s size or the size and volume of the transactions.

Which organisations require PCI DSS Compliance Certification?

Although there is technically no such thing as “PCI certification,” sellers of all sizes, service providers, banks, retail outlets, and any other organisations that process credit card payments need to prove they are PCI compliant.

Cost to become PCI DSS Compliant

Based on the size of your business, the annual cost to become PCI compliant and maintain that status can range from approximately $1,000 to over $50,000.

What is a PCI DSS Compliance Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ)?

The PCI DSS Self-Assessment Questionnaire is a 19 to 87-page checklist developed and distributed by

the PCI Security Standards Council. It is utilised by sellers to self-validate their PCI DSS compliance.

PCI-DSS Non-Compliance can cause penalties

Companies that handle financial transactions but do not adhere to the PCI-DSS standard may face fines ranging from $5,000 to $50,000, depending on other factors. In addition, non-compliance can result in losing the right to support payment applications, negatively impacting your credibility and trustworthiness, and discouraging customers from engaging with your business.

How Can Anitech Help in PCI-DSS Certification?

Anitech’s expert Information Security Consultants will analyse your organisation’s payment security system and design a robust security framework complying with PCI-DSS Standard.

Here are the steps involved:

1) Scope Formulation

This stage identifies all system components responsible for storing, processing, or transmitting cardholder data.

To limit the scope, network segmentation is used as a trump card. This is achieved by isolating the environment containing cardholder data from the rest.

2) Gap Analysis

Here, is the current state of your organisation’s information security controls to the PCI – DSS requirements. We provide recommendations/advice whenever meeting the PCI-DSS standard’s requirements presents a challenge.

3) Assistance in Implementation

There comes a point in the effort to achieve PCI-DSS Compliance where all-or-nothing decisions must be made. The implementation of correction of security controls makes all the difference at this point. Our team of knowledgeable Information Security Consultants will assist you with threat modelling, vulnerability identification, and vulnerability management. They will also offer training sessions to your management and staff to help them learn about the standard and the various processes involved in its implementation.

For more details, feel free to reach out to us on 1300 802 163 or e-mail – info@anitechgroup.com or enquire here.


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