How to Make Your Business PCI Compliant When Accepting Electronic Payments

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Identity theft, data breach and payment fraud are serious threats facing the digital payment industry globally. As a business owner accepting electronic payment methods from customers, it is more important than ever to put measures in place to ensure the privacy and security of every payer’s financial details.  The PCI Compliant Standard was set up by the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Security Standard Council as an industry guideline for ensuring your payment systems are safeguarded against a possible breach. This standard includes 12 requirements that a business must meet for it to be officially PCI Complaint. In the article, we’ll walk you through the PCI Data Security Standard guidelines and how your business can become PCI Compliant.


What is PCI Compliance?

The payment card industry compliance or PCI Compliance for short is a set of security standards for all businesses to follow when accepting, processing, storing or transmitting credit card information to improve account security throughout the payment transaction process. The PCI Data Security Standard was created by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) an independent body which was launched on September 7, 2006, by the major payment card brands (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover and JCB).


How to Know if Your Business is PCI Compliant

The PCI Data Security Standard specifies twelve requirements for compliance. To determine how PCI-compliant your business is, you can run a system audit to see how many of the 12 security guidelines your business currently follows.



  1. Install and maintain a firewall on your computer systems
  2. Do not use vendor-supplied default settings for system passwords and other security parameters.



  1. Encrypt transmission of cardholder data over open, public networks.
  2. Store cardholder data securely.



  1. Update antivirus and malware protection regularly.
  2. Maintain secure systems and applications.



  1. Restrict access to cardholder data on a need-to-know basis.
  2. Restrict physical access to cardholder data e.g camera or device access.
  3. Require users to log in and authenticate to access computer systems.



  1. Track and monitor access to network resources and cardholder data.
  2. Test security systems regularly.



  1. Maintain an information security policy for all company personnel


Steps to Become PCI Compliant

Here’s a guide on where to start to get your business fully compliant with PCI Data Security Standard.

1. Know the Compliance Level your business falls under. The PCI Data Security Standards has set four compliance levels with varying requirements for businesses in each level to follow to be PCI Compliant. The levels are as follows:

Level 1: Businesses with more than 6 million transactions per year across all sales channels

Level 2: Businesses with annual transactions between 1 million and 6 million across all sales channels.

Level 3: Businesses that process 20,000 to 1 million e-commerce transactions per year.

Level 4: Businesses which process fewer than 20,000 annual e-commerce transactions, or up to 1 million total yearly transactions across all sales channels.

2. Next, complete an assessment of your business’s systems and security practices following the requirements for your compliance level.  

3. Perform a security scan of the payment network and address vulnerabilities immediately.

4. Only use PCI-compliant payment software and card readers and ensure you install the latest system updates.


PCI Compliant Payment Solutions from Tingg Africa

Tingg Africa offers your business payment solutions that meet the highest security standards so that you can accept electronic payments across various channels without any worry. Our PCI-compliant technologies store cardholder data securely using high-level encryptions when transmitting information over our payment network. Our login authentication process also allows you to control account access, keeping your customers and your business safe.

Try Tingg Africa today, visit tingg.africa to set up an account today or learn more.

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