What is PCI?

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a worldwide information security standard assembled by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC).


The standard was created to protect customers‘ information and credentials. It applies to all organizations which store, process, or transmit cardholder information from any legitimate credit card. PCI DSS originally began as five different programs:

  • Visa Card Information Security Program,
  • MasterCard Site Data Protection,
  • American Express Data Security Operating Policy,
  • Discover Information and Compliance and
  • JCB Data Security Program.

These programs had similar intentions: to protect customers by ensuring that merchants met minimum levels of security when they store, process and transmit cardholder data. In 2004, these companies aligned their individual policies and released the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS).



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