Aug 15, 2013

What is PCI Compliance and is it a scam?

padss    Thousands of merchant’s everyday swipe cards for us and with that, comes a great responsibility. Our information is in the hands of merchants that must comply with the rules set forth by the PCI or Payment Card Industry. The rules are in place to protect the card users and insure, for public safety, that our personal information, as well as our card information, goes no further than the place we have chosen to do business.
Computers used by the merchants have shown great vulnerability and questionable tactics. They have a network that not only they use, but have opened to their customers for use as well. If the Firewall they are using is incomplete or in any way, shape, or form it will expose information to hackers and thieves. We have all heard in recent years, of the tactics taken by cyber terrorists, and they have no problem taking what is not theirs.

PCI Compliance Rules

The PCI was started by American Express, Discover, MasterCard, Visa and JCB International as our major card holders. As long as the merchants follow the rules, they are in compliance. If they fail to keep our information safe, it can result in some major fines. They range anywhere from $5,000 to a whopping $100,000 fine. If you are a smaller business, that could close your doors. Even if you are one of the major retailers, it could put quite the damper on the budget. Its serious business and these card companies intend to keep the bar high.

DSS (Data Security Standard)

The PCI has mandated that retailers properly secure their data from the credit cards and they have a twelve step process they require. (To view those steps, go here: http://bit.ly/16Jw6ne). With these twelve steps, as long as the merchant follows them, they are in compliance with the rules and the public can rest assured their information is safe in that companies hands.
Companies are divided into four business levels.
• Level One: More than 6 million transactions a year.
• Level Two: 1 million to 6 million transactions per year.
•Level Three: 20,000 to 1 million e-commerce transactions per year.
• Level Four: Less than 20,000 Visa e-commerce transactions per year, and all other merchants processing up to 1 million Visa transactions per year.
Most of our merchants fall into Level four status and they are the hardest to keep track of, but with the PCI Security Council, they continually ask for validation through certificates. With this check and balance system going on, the PCI seems to work.

Over all


This system could wreak havoc on all of us that use cards. As long as the human factor stays under control, the computer system with firewalls and security works well. Over all, it does not appear to be a scam at all. It’s put into place to protect the average buyer from losing all their privacy and from thieves walking off with everything.  One of the many High Risk Merchant Account companies out there, like eMerchantBroker.com can help you get set up.  As long as everyone follows the rules, the system works.

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Having a merchant account allows an account holder to take advantage of merchant cash advances. When a merchant is approved for an advance, the business agrees to receive a lump sum of cash in exchange for an agreed-upon percentage of future credit card sales.

Pricing varies depending the merchant’s industry, past credit card processing history, the type of business seeking the account, average ticket sales, and average transaction volumes.

Yes, EMB works with merchants who are building their credit, as well as those who have poor credit. EMB also approves merchants that have no credit card processing history and businesses that have lost their merchant accounts due to high chargebacks.

Several factors influence a merchant’s risk level. Though only one factor likely will not get a merchant classified as high risk, a combination of these may: business size, location, and industry, credit score, credit card processing history, a industry’s reputation for excessive chargebacks, a prior history of high chargeback ratios, and whether a merchant exclusively sells online.

Virtual terminals are stationed on a merchant’s website, making it easy for customers to make a payment or purchase online. Merchants or a payment processor can easily set up virtual terminals, so online businesses can accept credit and debit card and e-check transactions.

A merchant account is a business account with an acquiring bank. Without this business account, which actually works more like a line of credit, a merchant cannot accept and process credit and debit card transactions. Businesses need a merchant account to accept major credit cards via a static point-of-sale terminal, mobile card reader, or through a virtual payment gateway.

After filling out EMB’s simple online application and submitting any necessary, requested documents, many merchants get approved within 24 and 48 hours.

EMB specializes in working with high-risk merchants. EMB works with many merchants, including but not limited to businesses in these industries: gambling and gaming, adult entertainment, nutraceuticals, vaping and e-cigarettes, electronics, tech support, travel, high-end furniture, weight loss programs, calling cards, e-books and software, and telecommunications.

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