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Frequently Asked Questions Business Owners Have on PCI Compliance

PCI Compliance

PCI Compliance

Let me guess: You want to learn more about the Payment Card Industry (PCI), don’t you? However, with all the things that you need cover, you can’t help but feel overwhelmed. As a PCI DSS compliant call center, we’re here to help you with just that — learning about PCI compliance.

We’re going to walk you through some of the basics of the industry, hoping that we’ll be able to address the burning questions that you have about it.

Today, we’re going to do this by answering ten common queries that a lot of first-timers have on PCI compliance.

Without further ado, let’s hop right in.

1. What is the PCI DSS?

PCI DSS stands for the “Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard.” This is a set of security protocols and guidelines designed to make sure that all companies that accept, store, process, or transmit any credit card information would maintain a secure environment.

2. What is the PCI SSC?

PCI SSC stands for the “Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council.” This council is a body launched last September 7, 2006 for the management of the growth and changing dynamics of security standards in the PCI.

The PCI SSC administers and handles the PCI DSS and focuses on enhancing account security through the payment and transaction process. This body was made by leading payment card brands, namely: MasterCard, Visa, Discover, American Express, and JCB.

3. Is the PCI SSC responsible for enforcing compliance?

No. The acquirers and payment brands are responsible for compliance enforcement, not the PCI council.

4. Does the PCI DSS apply to my business?

If your company transmits, stores, or accepts any cardholder data, then the PCI DSS applies to your organization no matter its size or transaction amount.

5. What is a merchant?

A merchant is any entity that accepts any payment card that bears a logo of any of the PCI SSC members for payment of goods or services.

6. What is an acquirer?

An acquirer is an entity that processes transactions for merchants. These entities are usually financial institutions and are explicitly defined by a payment brand as such. Other names that it may carry include “acquiring bank,” “merchant bank,” and “acquiring financial institution.”

7. What is a service provider?

A service provider is any entity

  • That is not a payment card brand; and,
  • That is directly involved in cardholder data storage, processing, or transmission.

8. Can a merchant also be a service provider?

Yes. If your company stores, processes, and transmits cardholder data, and if your organization also accepts payment cards as a payment for services or goods, then your business is both a merchant and a service provider.

9. Are there penalties for non-compliance?

Yes, there are. If non-compliance is spotted, payment brands may fine a bank $5,000 to $100,000 each month for every violation. The bank would usually pass along the fine until it would eventually reach the merchant.

Also, banks may either increase transaction fees or terminate your relationship depending on the violation performed.

10. What happens if my business chooses not to cooperate?

PCI DSS is not a law and just a standard. However, merchants who do not comply with PCI DSS may receive fines at the discretion of service providers and acquirers if a violation was spotted.

Also, any breach events that occur may incur forensic audits and card replacement costs from these acquirers or service providers.

What’s next?

Do you still have more questions about PCI compliance?

Let us know about them in the comments below.

(Note: If you’re looking for a PCI DSS compliant call center to help administer your customer’s sensitive authentication data. Contact us now.)

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Provide the Best Tech Support Using These Killer Strategies

Best Tech Support
Best Tech Support
© pingingz / Dollar Photo Club

Being a tech support agent requires computer knowledge, and the ability to communicate with clients clearly about problems and solutions. The support team also needs to possess the ability to diagnose issues, and provide quick fixes. Additionally, each tech support agent should know how to work with other departments, which speeds up problem solving.

Here are deeper strategies on improving your tech support team.

Keep a Log of Problems and Solutions

While listening skills and fixing problems quickly are a must, you should never overlook taking the time to document each case. Tech support teams already commonly assign case numbers, but not everyone takes notes on how they approach and resolve each case. Keeping a record of this information is helpful should the issue need to be readdressed so that you don’t have to keep reinventing the wheel.

Offer Training That Inspires Long Term Careers

Since tech support has a high turnover rate due to low pay and dealing with disappointed people, you need to devise a plan that makes the work seem rewarding to employees. It’s better to have a consistent team that grows with experience than to keep replacing your employees all the time. Offering a combination of career training and incentives can lead to a more loyal workforce.

Build a Team with Positive Members

Square one in building a successful tech support team is finding the right people in the first place. Many times a candidate with a positive attitude that lacks experience is a better selection than someone who is more experienced but lacks upbeat energy. Remember that tech knowledge can be learned on the job, especially with curious people who want to take initiative and exhibit determination to help others.

Inspire Strong Communication Skills 

Communication is the cornerstone of every successful business. Remind your team not to cave in to client frustration. Regularly offer examples of how to maintain positive conversations that stay focused on the solution without having anxiety about the problem. Instead of pressuring your team to resolve as many issues an hour as possible, concentrate on satisfying the client by listening carefully and sharing your concern in non-technical plain English.

Develop a Set of Ethics

The foundation of good ethics for a tech support team is respect and trust. Reinforce the idea as much as possible that tech professionals should never get angry with frustrated clients. The key to maintaining an upbeat atmosphere is to create a level of confidence in which each tech support representative knows who to turn to if they cannot readily answer a question.

Give Clients a Chance to Respond

Once a problem is resolved, show your concern for the client by asking whether or not they are satisfied with the solution. Either asking them directly or emailing them a quick questionnaire can yield powerful answers that help you evaluate your team’s effectiveness. This information can then be used to determine how to improve your team’s skills.

Expand Your Team’s Knowledge 

Tech is such a vast terrain of devices, networking and strategies that you can never run out of new information to feed your team. Whether it’s about Access, PhotoShop, Illustrator or many other programs, take the time to demystify various software on a regular basis. You can strengthen the skill level of your team by sharing the basics of popular platforms.

Best Tech Support
© BillionPhotos.com / Dollar Photo Club


Your tech support team is bound to be become more effective, productive, and skillful as you introduce new techniques and technologies to aid them with their job. As your team grows, be sure to remind not to lose focus, and that facilitating their clients’ needs is the most important aspect of their jobs.

If you’re looking for an experienced team of tech support specialists, please contact us using this form. Cheers!

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