More importantly, are you and your vendor fully PCI-compliant, and can you afford the fines from a widespread data breach? In short, the answer is always no. Trinity Software maintains high levels of security and is PCI Compliant, but not all MLM Software providers do this and this can be a huge risk.
This article contains key information for any MLM marketer who takes credit card payments on their website. If your MLM business depends on credit card payments, then you need to read this important information below.
Let’s learn more about what it means for your MLM business to be in PCI compliance.
What Does PCI Compliant Mean?
To begin with, PCI stands for the payment card industry. Major credit cards like Visa, MasterCard, and others are backed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). You do not want the FTC involved with your business affairs. They have the federal powers to stop your e-commerce business dead in its tracks. PCI compliance is ruled by credit card companies to help ensure the security of credit card transactions in the payments industry.
All businesses receiving credit card payments must be in compliance with the PCI Security Standards Council. They must also adhere to all guidelines such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which is an EU law designed for the cardholder’s privacy rights and data protection. Thanks to GDPR, security, and privacy are deadly serious concerns in this day and age.
Being PCI compliant also means following all guidelines set forth by the Security Council. While there are several guidelines, the six major requirements include:
- Maintaining and building secure network systems
- Protect cardholder data and privacy right
- Implement concrete access control measure
- Maintaining a vulnerability management program
- Regularly test and monitor networks
- Maintaining an information security policy
The importance of cybersecurity is vital in today’s high-tech world. Your software provider should have top-notch data security. If your mlm software provider does not have this feature then you should sign up to demo our Firestorm software today and experience the difference.
Is Your Vendor PCI Complaint?
Next, make sure your vendor is PCI compliant and has been audited by an external security assessor. If they are not, you should probably take this opportunity and RUN! Your MLM software provider should be audited by a security assessor. Otherwise, YOU are liable for any breach that occurs. That can be very expensive and even have your bank accounts frozen. You do not want that or to be liable for any breach that could occur, do you?
The Financial Impact of a Data Security Breach
The financial impact for MLM businesses running multiple e-commerce platforms with a data security breach can be crippling for most businesses. The threat of hackers is a reality, and they do exist. If a hacker steals your customer’s credit card information, without certified PCI DSS protection, your business is in big trouble. You might as well liquidate your assets and pay who you can because a data breach is not a joke. Ask yourself, can your business operate without the ability to send and receive credit card payments?
The FTC Can Freeze Your Bank Accounts
The FTC is a government body that has federal powers to freeze your bank accounts. So, can your MLM business afford to be denied the use of credit cards on your e-commerce website? Since e-commerce platforms run on digital transactions, without a way to receive payments, your business is dead.
The Federal Trade Commission is a heavy hitter with substantive fines handed down for violators who cause a data breach. One of the first things that they do during their initial investigations into a security breach is freezing your assets.
How to Keep Your MLM Business in PCI Compliance
The best way to keep your MLM business in PCI-compliance is to have a software provider who has your back. Here at Trinity Software, your private information is safe with us, we don’t believe in gathering it or selling it. We have undergone the PCI certification process and can furnish you with a valid certificate.
It is also important to make sure that every transaction that you will have must be recorded or at least has a receipt to protect you and your company. The experience that business owners receive with Firestorm’s in-house custom programming is one of relief and value to your company.
Being in PCI noncompliance can cost millions in fines if a data breach should occur at your place of business. To avoid penalties like this it is important to follow it exactly and have the protection of advanced software like Firestorm on your side.
The next major topic we’re going to talk about is PCI compliance. PCI stands for “payment card industry.” So if you’re going to be taking credit cards on your ecommerce website, which you probably will, your vendor and you have to be fully PCI compliant. If you’re not, what is means is that you could potentially get fined in the vent of a breach, which we’ve all heard – they happen. So what we have to do is, your vendor should be PCI compliant. That should be confirmed as audited by an external security assessor. Now what that means, it’s a very expensive process, but it’s one that your vendor must undergo. If they’re not doing it, run! Because that means that you are liable for any breach that occurs. It’s not good.
Data security is a big part of that as well. You all know about the CCPR and the GDPR acts that are coming down. These are privacy acts. Right now, we’re not forced into compliance, but it’s coming, ok? People are getting tired of their information getting sold, which is what the GDPR and the California privacy act address. Now, we do not gather private information and re-sell it. We just don’t. Our systems were never designed to do that. We don’t think it’s a good idea, but it’s important that you’re aware of these regulations. PCI compliance is a big one, because if you get breached and you’re not PCI compliant, they’re going to prohibit you from taking credit cards ever again. Not to mention the millions of dollars in fines that you could be assessed. So it’s not worth the risk.
Your vendor must be able to provide you with a certification – it’s a certificate that the security assessor issues certifying that you are fully compliant. Everything you do is protecting their data and taking care of it. So you must have a copy of that on file, because your credit card company will ask you for it. And if your vendor can’t supply it, leave. Go somewhere else. It’s not worth the risk. It could actually cost you your company, if you think about it. If you were levied a twenty-five million dollar fine from Visa because you breached one-hundred thousand credit card numbers, could you afford it? I couldn’t afford it. And you need to think about that as you’re protecting your business.
So your vendor is an integral part of that, but you also have a requirement to be PCI compliant. Now yours are not as stringent as ours are because we process hundreds of thousands and millions of credit cards, but it’s important that you’re aware of the rules you do have to follow. So do not overlook this. This is really important.