The payments industry's increasing, and necessary, focus on data security has caused significant grumbling about the PCI PIN Entry Device Security Requirements and the Payment Application (PA) DSS, has updated its Self Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ).
The SAQ is an essential validation tool used by merchants and service providers to demonstrate compliance with the PCI DSS.
The revamped SAQ is designed to simplify and streamline the assessment process and aid small and mid-size merchants who are not required to have on-site PCI compliance assessments. The new SAQ comes in four updated versions tailored specifically for different categories of card acceptors. The upside is that many merchants will no longer have to answer questions about card processing and security systems that don't apply to them.
Conversely, the questions probe harder for weak spots in payment processing software applications - a vulnerable area that some experts believe hasn't received proper attention thus far.
The updated SAQ also aims to bring self-assessments in line with version 1.1 of the PCI standards.
"Inconsistencies between the SAQ and the DSS 1.1 have been addressed," said a PCI SSC representative.
PCI SSC General Manager Bob Russo said with the introduction of the updated SAQ, "merchants will now have a better understanding for the steps necessary to secure their payment data and comply with the PCI DSS." The new SAQ is available now at www.pcisecuritystandards.org/tech/saq.htm. Its four distinct versions include:
The PCI SSC's Web site also contains comprehensive guides and a list of links to help merchants and their service providers better navigate through PCI's murky waters.
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