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3 New Steps to Simplify PCI Compiliance in Virtual Environments

Compliance and IT GovernanceToday, many organizations are scrambling to be Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant in virtual environments. PCI compliance is a security standard that ensures that any company that processes, stores, or transmits credit card information maintains a secure environment for that information. Essentially, any organization that has a merchant ID needs to be PCI compliant. It is especially important because clients and vendors need to know that they can trust an organization with their sensitive data.

But how does an organization become PCI compliant, especially in an age of dynamic technological changes and sophisticated intrusions? Here are three ways that can simplify PCI compliance in virtual environments. 
  1. Adjust the scope of the anticipated solution: After investigation, an organization may have detailed all of the steps that they need to perform so that they can adhere to PCI compliance standards. However, sometimes a business cannot do it all, or at least not right away. Prioritize the tasks that must be done immediately down to those that are nice to have. Keep in mind the technology and resources required to complete the tasks as well as the timelines for completion. 
  2. Tap into expertise: If an organization knows what they want to achieve but may not have the knowledge to do it thoroughly or efficiently, it is a good idea to look into vendors who do have that knowledge and expertise. They can also advise about upcoming security advancements, protect against new and insidious cyber attacks, and advise about what can be done to protect sensitive data both quickly, professionally, and affordably. 
  3. Encrypt all data: Most importantly, every organization wanting to be PCI compliant needs to encrypt all data that they receive and transmit. Review all types of data to make sure that they are actually encrypted, and then determine if they are encrypted well and how the encryption can be strengthened. By monitoring encryption techniques on a regular basis, any business can help ensure that the data is well protected and less vulnerable to attacks.

It is imperative that any organization dealing with sensitive credit card data be PCI compliant as soon as possible and as strongly as possible. This maximizes the trust of clients and vendors, and helps ensures the continuity of a business. By realizing that one size doesn’t fit all, an organization can determine the best course of action to take, engage expertise in a range of areas, and then use this expertise and its accompanying technology to implement rock solid solutions.


Is Network Security Worthless?

Network Security

In today’s world of free data exchange, it is an interesting thought to be addressed on whether network security really hold the importance as it used to be a few years earlier? But this is of great priority for corporate management and top level management to have a better understanding of the real need for professionally-managed network security.

5 Things About Data Protection a Compliancy Officer Doesn't Know

Compliance and Data Protection

One of the biggest problems for an officer retained to monitor compliance with data protection law is that, unlike the European Union, there is no overarching government regulation. Instead, the United States takes a piecemeal approach that relies on regulation, self-regulation and legislation written to address specific issues such as the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

Federal Government Adopts Cloud Computing

IT services with the cloud

One of the most exciting developments in business technology in recent years has been the development of a wide range of cloud solutions.  These IT solutions are becoming so widespread and important that now, the United States Department of Defense has appointed a ‘cloud services’ broker who must issue approval before components of any department may move onto a cloud computing basis.  The Chief Information Officer for the Department of Defense, Terry Takai, has announced that DISA, the Defense Information Systems Agency will serve as the designated broker. 

FDA Medical Devices' Ruling to Impact SMBs' IT Compliance

Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Logo

Any business that deals with medical devices at any phase of the supply chain will need to prepare to comply with a new rule published in the Federal Register on July 10th.  Full IT compliance may involve the use of heightened IT services, particularly for small and medium-sized businesses that may not be well staffed at present to deal with the requirements of the new mandate. 

Healthcare Decision: IT Security Implications for Small Business

IT Governance

Although there was some confusion at first in the news media concerning the Supreme Court's landmark decision on President Obama's Affordable Care Act, now that experts have had a chance to digest the ruling fully, it is clear that the health care law has been upheld in most of its major details.  This may not seem like it has IT security implications, but it actually does because the law moving forward means not only that states will need to set up exchanges for health insurance purchases, but that all ACOs will have to meet new requirements related to information technology.

HIPAA IT Governance Most Challenging for Small Business

Government and IT Security

A recent analysis of the first compliance audits for HIPAA, the nation's landmark health information security and privacy law, has found that small organizations are experiencing more difficulty than large ones in meeting the stringent IT security requirements of the regulation.  According to Linda Sanches, who helped to supervise the audit process for the federal government, "HIPAA hasn't been a priority for several years...Risk assessments were done six years ago and haven't been looked at since."

IT Governance Improves Business Efficiency and Regulatory Compliance

IT Governance and Compliance

Virtually unheard of a few years ago, IT governance is now one of the industry’s fastest growing fields.  As such, it is essential that every IT person in your organization understand what it is, and why it's so important.  This is particularly true for your company’s managers and officers, as their decisions related to IT governance could have a huge financial impact on your organization.

Small Businesses in Need of IT Support for Payment Systems

business payment systems

Payment processor First Data has revealed that over the course of the past year, there has been a surge of hacker incidences seeking unauthorized access to systems that use a point-of-sale approach for credit cards.  Unfortunately, for small and medium sized businesses, the merchants that are being targeted most heavily by tech criminals are those that are classified as Level 4 by Visa.  Such businesses, which process relatively low numbers of transactions each year, are responsible for slightly less than one-third of all credit card transactions that take place in the United States. 

3 Benefits of Network Automation Through Managed Services

Network Automation

In a managed services model for IT support, the IT company managing your data center operations can implement a great deal of automation.  This is to the benefit of the business or other organization contracting for managed services, and not just because automation tends to lower overall costs.

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