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Is your ecommerce shopping cart PCI compliant?

So you were wondering, why should I need to keep track of this PCI with all my other duties?  If you sell on-line via a shopping cart,  then you are effected by these new security rules that need to be in place by 2010.  Check to see if your IT pros are on top of this and if they are already compliant.  If you do your own shopping cart code it is subject to rigorous review.

In my research of this change, I have found that the Payment Card Industry (PCI) established these security standards to protect the private information of all individuals and organizations. These are the security standards that are used by all credit card companies and all financial institutions, Internet vendors, and on-line and retail merchants.

Ask if your shopping cart  and payment gateway is fully PCI compliant and at what level it is classified. They are rated level 1 to 4, with 1 being the highest.  This PCI standard from a marketing perspective should be promoted, since it means your customers can feel safe that their private information is kept secure and handled appropriately.

Check to see if your IT dept or web masters have been  informed that your Web site or storefront is not PCI compliant. In some cases it is likely referring to your Web site  and not to your shopping cart .  If your web site does not collect any credit card information, it does not need to be PCI compliant.  All Credit Card transactions  processed through your shopping cart must be PCI compliant.  I have read that for small retailers the cost could be around $5k.  But for larger merchants it could be $20 k to as high as $4 million to comply.

For additional information on PCI Compliance, visit the PCI Compliance Guide Web site.  There is also  a good article on the subject in Sept 09, Internet Retailer Magazine.

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