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Four Novel Ways to Secure Credit Card Payments

Editorial Team
by Atlantic.Net (213 posts) under PCI Hosting
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It is essential for any business that accepts credit and debit card payments to ensure that every transaction is as secure as possible. Each business has a responsibility to ensure that each online transaction, mobile app transaction, or chip and pin sale is protected.

Fraud is an ever-present and sophisticated threat to credit card payments. Cybercriminals are getting “smarter,” so it’s important to protect your business by equipping it with the most innovative technology available. PCI-DSS is still the go-to standard for securing card transactions, and the security requirement does evolve year after year.

However, you can always take your security a step further by staying informed about novel security features to protect card payments. The following four technologies will help secure your credit card payments against today’s risks to protect your business and your customers.

End-to-End Encryption

Encryption is one of the best ways to defend against credit card fraud and data loss. Protecting the Primary Account Number (PAN) is fundamental here, and security depends on the card number being obfuscated. Any digital record must never have a full card number on it;’ this includes backups and live systems.

What this means is that all sensitive data must be encrypted to a minimum of AES256 security standard, and network communications must be encrypted between point-to-point connections and VPN traffic. There are exceptions made for MPLS traffic provided the point-to-point is encrypted; however, there is no need to take the risk of not encrypting this traffic since now even via MPLS encryption should be a standard operating procedure for your company.

Strong cryptography and security protocols such as SSL/TLS and IPSEC should be used on public-facing websites, and these transactions must be protected with a valid TLS/SSL certificate to safeguard cardholder data during transmission.

The Atlantic.Net Cloud platform is designed from the ground up to be secure. All servers and storage are encrypted at rest to industry standards; we offer encrypted VPN and network consultancy is available. Our team can offer guidance for risk assessments to identify risk to PAN and offer advice on how to secure this sensitive data.

EMV Compliance

EMV Compliance creates an extra layer of protection to credit card transactions. Each time you use the card, the chip embedded into the card is used to generate a transaction code, a unique code that can only be used once. The codes are always changing, making them very difficult to crack.

It is recommended to only accept these smart chip cards at your business. These are the standardized chip cards found in the United States and Europe. EMV stands for Europay, Mastercard, and Visa, the 3 companies that defined the standard. It is recommended to phase out accepting magnetic stripe cards with a signature because fraud is rife in that legacy format. Magnetic cards can be skimmed by hacking communities and easily cloned.

Although you will need to speak directly to the merchant regarding EMV, Atlantic.Net can provide the infrastructure used by this service. Our network services can extend to your business, and our platform will secure the end-to-end transmission of the transaction.

Tokenization

Tokenization is a robust encryption method that replaces sensitive cardholder information with a randomly generated string of characters referred to as a token. For instance, the cardholder number 1234-5678-9123-4567 could become EO5L-X03K-S2LX-79BQ. Tokens have no value if breached and can only be decrypted by the token vault at the last step of the transaction process by the payment processor.

We recommend tokenization over point-to-point encryption as the data cannot be unmasked during the transaction to reveal the token’s true values. After all, every payment provider that assists with transaction authorization is subject to fraud. With tokenization, cardholder data is protected even if one provider in the process is under attack.

Remote Signature Capture

You may be familiar with the option to email yourself a digital receipt when making an in-store payment. In the case of remote transactions in which a signature was previously impossible to obtain, select providers are applying this concept to obtain card-not-present signatures.

With remote signature capture, you can simply email the digital receipt to be signed via your customer’s finger on a smartphone or mouse on a desktop. U.S. courts have ruled that digital signatures are legally binding, so they carry the same weight as traditional signatures in the event of a chargeback dispute.

Although obtaining a signature is becoming a less-required fraud-prevention measure, it’s still wise to do your due diligence and capture a customer’s signature, especially if you ship high-value items.

How can Atlantic.Net help?

Atlantic.Net has been providing Compliance Hosting service for decades, and we have a security-defined, PCI-ready cloud platform that customers can plug straight into when starting their PCI-compliance journey. This service makes achieving compliance a much simpler task as Atlantic.Net will ensure that your hosting meets and exceeds the required standards; all you need to do is complete the PCI administrative tasks required for assessment.

Reliable partners and service providers play a crucial role in ensuring PCI compliance is maintained. Atlantic.Net’s is SOC 2 and SOC 3 certified, HIPAA and HITECH audited, PCI-DSS compliant, and regularly audited for security. Atlantic.Net’s team has extensive experience helping businesses with PCI-compliant hosting environments. Contact our team today to get started on a custom PCI-Compliant Hosting Solution for your business!

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