What are PCI compliance requirements and their importance
PCI compliance requirements are highly important for payments, whether it's your own company, or when choosing a supplier. Read more now.
What are PCI compliance requirements and their importance

Whether it's your own company or when choosing a supplier, PCI compliance requirements are highly important for payments. Understand all about it here.


PCI compliance, or PCI DSS, is one of the most relevant security system certifications in the world. This is the acronym for Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, and it is required for all companies that process card payments.

This certification was developed and is managed by the PCI Security Standards Council, which was created by the most important brands in the card industry, such as American Express, Mastercard, and Visa.

In this article, you will better understand what the PCI DSS certification is, what its levels are, and the benefits this certification brings to an organization — whether it's your own company, or when choosing a supplier. Check it all out below!

What is PCI Compliance?

This is an issued certificate that verifies if the company correctly manages the credit card data that travels through its network. PCI Compliance comprises a series of security requirements and procedures in order to protect cardholders' personal data and thereby reduce the risk of card data theft or fraud.

To obtain this type of certification, the company must meet 12 minimum requirements that are divided into 6 objectives, namely:

  • design and maintain a secure network to carry out transactions;
  • protect cardholder data;
  • keep the system secure from hackers;
  • implement strong access control measures;
  • monitor and test networks constantly;
  • maintain a formal security policy.

When the company reaches these 6 goals, it is able to obtain the PCI DSS certification, which confirms that it has the correct handling of card data in relation to user security and information leakage.

In addition, it is necessary to know how to conduct an assessment to obtain it. The analysis basically consists of an audit performed by a qualified security assessor that verifies that the merchant has achieved the 12 requirements, which have more than 300 security procedures.

Finally, the company will still need to prove compliance with the requirements annually by submitting a self-assessment questionnaire or compliance report.

What are the PCI Compliance tiers?

There are four tiers of PCI Compliance, and they are related to the number of online transactions carried out using credit cards. Each level requires annual renewal and has different requirements, ranging from annual self-questionnaires to annual audits. See what they are below:

  • Tier 1: organizations that process more than 6 million Visa or MasterCard transactions annually and/or more than 2.5 million American Express transactions or any association of cards (MasterCard and Visa, for example);
  • Tier 2: companies that annually process from 1 to 6 million transactions per year;
  • Tier 3: organizations with annual processing of 20,000 to 1 million online transactions and organizations with total annual processing of less than 1 million transactions;
  • Tier 4: companies that handle less than 20,000 transactions per year and organizations that process less than 1 million transactions per year.

Why is it important to look for certified payment solutions?

In a scenario with increasingly recurrent applications of fraud in card payment systems, proving security and ethics in the handling of card transactions is essential to obtain greater credibility with consumers.

After all, this type of certification improves the company's position in the market and increases competitiveness, since the requirements can be extremely difficult to implement, maintain and update according to the updates proposed by the council.

The purpose of adopting PCI Compliance is to reduce and prevent the possibility of fraud or information theft. In other words, adopting a PCI DSS compliant payment solution means providing an excellent and secure consumer shopping experience.

In addition, the company will stand out from other organizations that do not have such certifications, as it attests to good behavior with payment data.

What are the PCI Compliance requirements?

PCI Compliance requirements are divided into 6 objectives, as mentioned above, which aim to provide a secure payment chain where there is no room for theft or leak of card information and customer data.

Among the requirements, there are more than 300 procedures that must be met to ensure compliance with the certification. Let's see which are the main ones:

  • using a firewall strong enough to be effective, however, without causing major problems for sellers and cardholders;
  • not using passwords and default settings created by sellers;
  • protecting the data collected from the consumer (date of birth, document ID, phone number, and e-mail address);
  • encrypting customer data transmissions through public networks;
  • using antivirus, antispyware and malware protection software and ensure they are constantly updated;
  • developing and maintaining secure systems and applications;
  • minimizing access to credit card data according to the position of each company employee;
  • assigning unique, non-transferable login data to each network user and system;
  • minimizing physical and electronic access to card information;
  • tracking and monitoring network access and credit card data;
  • assessing the security of systems and processes regularly;
  • determining a security policy that is respected and maintained by all.

In this article, we have seen what PCI Compliance is, its main requirements, and also how important this type of certification is for companies that carry out several credit card transactions. Therefore, it is essential that the corporation invests in this technology, as it avoids fraud and data theft, making the consumer have a great experience and become loyal to the brand.

BoaCompra by PagSeguro is certified as a PCI DSS company and is ready to help your company leverage its business in Latin America through local payment methods. Click below to contact us to learn more about how we can help your business succeed in Latin America:

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