SMB Merchants VERY Aware of Payment Security Importance

ControlScan and Merchant Warehouse have released the results of their fifth annual survey of merchant awareness, sentiment and progress toward securing cardholder data in compliance with PCI standards.

Comprised primarily of small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs), the Level 4 merchant group represents 98 percent of all U.S. retailers. The report, “Payment Security and the SMB: The Fifth Annual Survey of Level 4 Merchant payment card industry (PCI) Compliance Trends,” reveals that as a group these merchants are making progress, but that key concerns definitely remain.

Nearly 75% believe payment card industry (PCI) standards improve the security, [but most] are not prepared should a data breach occur.

“Nearly three-quarters of survey respondents believe complying with PCI standards improves the security of their business, and that’s encouraging,” said Joan Herbig, CEO of ControlScan, in an interview with Website Magazine. “As a whole, though, these merchants are showing a lack of corresponding activity for prevention and detection. In addition, they are not prepared should a data breach occur.”

Insights from the study

  • 43% are personally responsible for information security
  • While 35% say no one is assigned the responsibility
  • 51% do not require their service providers to maintain PCI compliance
  • Only 36% have developed an incident response plan (IRP) for their business

“SMB merchants have a distinct need when it comes to payment security and compliance,” said Henry Helgeson, CEO, Merchant Warehouse. “Very few have the time or resources to think through what it takes to better their security posture, and most don’t even realize the significant risk their business faces. It’s up to us as their MSP to give them a cost-effective, simplified way to succeed in this regard.”

Get your own copy of the survey research report, which includes an in-depth discussion of the implications Level 4 merchants’ responses have for their own breach risk as well as the risk the MSPs serving them face.

Security Trends
SMB Merchants VERY Aware of Payment Security Importance
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