Monday, September 30, 2013

PCI DSS 3.0: The end of store and forward on mobile?

It is time for new PCI changes to get implemented. Last February (2013), the PCI Security Standards Council released a document on mobile payment security guidelines. While it is not the most entertaining read in the history of guidelines, it does shed light on some of the changes we are going to see implemented in the industry over the coming year. In November, expect to see a new set of regulations being handed down, to be fully implemented by the star of 2014. But most processors, not wanting to find themselves caught in the awkwardness of being out of compliance when the date hits, attempt to get on the bandwagon as early as possible and will demand the same of their merchants.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

PCI Program Update for North American Bancard Merchants

A notice came out today, September 17th, 2013, from the folks over at North American Bancard, which also provides the Phone Swipe and PayAnywhere products in the mobile processing field. Merchants who are on the mobile "Pay As You Go" plan (also known as Option B for Phone Swipe) should note that this information will not apply directly to their accounts, since those types of accounts have the compliance fees rolled into their higher percentage along with all other incidental costs (which is why Phone Swipe may be so much more cost-effective for merchants who do under $2,500 per month).

Here is an excerpt from the NAB correspondance:

"The monthly fee for PCI non-compliant merchants will be increasing from $6.95 to $14.95. This increase is effective for Global merchants and for First Data merchants. Your merchants will continue to receive messages on their statements notifying them when PCI billing will occur.

Note that the annual PCI compliance-related fees will not be increasing. Those fees will remain the same as they have for the past three years: $79 for all main accounts ($99 if non-compliant) and $19.95 for each additional account with the same Tax ID number and/or same Principal/Social Security Number ($24.95 if non-compliant). We are proud to say that these annual fees continue to be lower than those of our top competitors despite the fact that our compliance programs offer significantly better levels of protection and that our costs for the programs continue to increase."

NAB, just like most payment processors, sends their merchants notices regarding Payment Card Industry security standards and compliance issues in the merchants' monthly processing statements. Frequently merchants forget to check their statements for these announcements, which may also include rate or fee increases due to higher percentages being charged by Visa, MasterCard or Discover, that the processor might pass along to the merchant. It is essential that merchants remember to check their monthly statements, not only to verify that they are not being overcharged or billed for something that they do not understand, but to ensure that they are up to date on any changes or responsibilities regarding their accounts.