The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a set of requirements designed to ensure that all companies that process, store or transmit credit card information maintain a secure environment. All businesses that store, process or transmit payment cardholder data must be PCI Compliant. iTransact’s merchant processing services are Level 1 PCI Compliant. That’s the best you can get.
In simple terms, TLS (Transport Layer Security) and its predecessor SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) enables your web browser or shopping cart to transmit secure information over the Internet. TLS provides encryption and integrity of communications along with strong authentication using digital certificates. TLS uses a private key to encrypt data being submitted from a browser before it is transferred over the Internet via the TLS connection. When the data reaches the TLS-enabled web server at iTransact, it is decrypted. If the data were to be stolen during this transmission, it would remain unreadable. Many web sites use TLS to obtain confidential user information, such as credit card numbers. Web pages that incorporate TLS have a web address starting with https:// instead of the usual http://.
Due to weaknesses in the SSL protocol, the industry has determined that SSL is now obsolete and encryption using SSL or early versions of TLS must be replaced with the latest version of TLS as soon as possible. Merchants who have built or installed an integrated system (shopping care or custom software) for customers to access will need to make sure their system is updated. Please contact the needed vendors as soon as possible to determine what steps, if any, need to be taken. Users of iTransact’s virtual terminal can quickly check their browser version and the security protocol it is using the tool provided by SSL Labs.
One of the major misconceptions regarding Internet security is that information submitted to a server using SSL will always remain encrypted and secure. This is not true. A secure (SSL) server alone does nothing to protect the data after it is received by the server. SSL creates a secure path between the user’s browser and the SSL-enabled server. However, the information is only secure during the time that it is being transmitted from the browser to the server. Once the information reaches the server, the information is decrypted and SSL has no effect. If there is no further encryption taking place once the information reaches the server, the security of the information is compromised.
iTransact takes advantage of advanced security and encryption features to ensure the security and safety of customer data. After customer data (credit card number or checking account number) arrives at iTransact’s server via TLS, it is re-encrypted, which makes the information unreadable. This information is then pushed to an offline server (not accessible via the Internet) where the information is safely decrypted and the transaction is completed. Credit card and checking account data is never stored or transmitted in plain-text (readable) format.
Since most merchants accepting online payments do not have access to a secure server, and even fewer utilize advanced encryption technologies, iTransact fills the need to simplify online commerce. A merchant wishing to accept credit card and/or check payments online simply creates an HTML order form using the templates supplied by iTransact. Each merchant is given a unique Merchant ID that is included in the HTML source of the order form. There is no need for the merchant to have a secure server. A customer wishing to make a purchase from the merchant simply completes the merchant’s online order form. The customer can then be directed to iTransact’s secure server to enter their account information.
iTransact is fully compliant with the Payment Card Industry’s Data Security Standards (PCI DSS). PCI standards are endorsed by Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and other leading card brands.
iTransact’s most recent PCI audit was conducted by Specialized Security Services, Inc. View the Certificate of Compliance.
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