It may surprise you to learn that consumers lost nearly $8.8 billion to scams in 2022. This is an increase of over 30% from 2021. In addition to scamming, criminals also hack into business databases to procure sensitive information.

The most lucrative targets are those that handle customer payment information. Companies that hold this data should regularly conduct a PCI compliance test. This will help ensure their information stays as safe as possible.

Let’s explore the key information you need to know.

What Is a PCI Test?

A Payment Card Industry (PCI) test evaluates the security of your cardholder data environment. It also assesses systems or networks that connect to your data environment. This is true even for isolated networks or systems.

To clarify, a PCI test can examine your internal infrastructure and applications. A PCI test helps determine PCI DSS compliance. Failure to adhere to these regulations could result in substantial consequences.

Fines and fees are some of those common. However, it’s important to note you could also damage your company’s reputation. There are various tests during a PCI compliance assessment.

These include penetration testing, application security testing, and vulnerability scanning. The data gathered from these can help improve your overall security.

Penetration Testing vs Vulnerability Scanning

Many people confuse PCI penetration testing and vulnerability scanning. Although they’re similar, there are key factors you should keep in mind. Vulnerability scans are types of PCI testing that aim to detect and report on existing vulnerabilities.

They use a specific tool to discern them. A PCI assessment involves using penetration testing. This refers to a situation where someone hacks the system in a controlled environment.

After they discover vulnerabilities, they exploit them to uncover additional threats. Since PCI testing is manual, it takes longer to complete. It can also last anywhere from several days to weeks.

In contrast, vulnerability scanning often takes less than an hour.

Getting Started

To get started, it’s imperative to work with a professional. While it’s not impossible to handle PCI testing on your own, it’s not recommended.

Chances are you’ll waste extra time and resources doing so. You could also make egregious oversights that cause problems in the future. When searching for someone to work with, ensure they’ve collaborated with clients like you in the past.

They must understand your company’s nuances before moving forward. Checking their level of experience is also recommended. In general, you’ll get the best results from firms that have at least a decade of experience in the industry.

Look for professionals that are easy to communicate with, as well. This will help streamline your interactions with them.

Leverage a PCI Compliance Test

The importance of a PCI compliance test can’t be overstated. It’s imperative to prioritize this responsibility so you can keep your company’s data safe. This will lead to smoother operations and higher customer satisfaction.

Inception Network Strategies is a premier managed service provider dedicated to exceeding expectations. We aim to reduce complexity, add functionality, and minimize costs. You’ll learn more about the benefits we offer when you schedule a consultation today.