Meeting PCI compliance regulations gives your customers the assurance that you take their privacy and security seriously. Unfortunately, the same regulations that ensure your customers’ data security can add latency to your site. At Azion, we believe that security shouldn’t come at the cost of performance. That’s why we’re proud to announce that we are now a PCI DSS 3.2.1 Level 1 compliant service provider, effective across all of our edge platform services—delivering the security your business requires with the performance you’ve come to expect.
What is PCI Compliance?
PCI compliance, or PCI-DSS, is the Payment Card Industry and Data Security Standard: a set of requirements that ensure vendors who accept credit cards are taking proper precautions to guard their customers’ sensitive data against fraud and theft.
Created and governed by major credit card companies worldwide, PCI-DSS is required for any business that handles credit card transactions. So whether you have an online store or are simply adopting PCI standards as best practice, you must undergo periodic network scans and internal or external audits to ensure you are meeting the security standards required by the PCI Security Standards Council. Businesses that process a high level of transactions must meet a higher level of PCI compliance, requiring more frequent network scans and external audits.
What Does Azion’s PCI Certification Mean for You?
PCI compliance is not only a requirement for merchants—it’s good business practice. Showing customers that you value their data security improves their trust in your services and reduces the risk of costly and reputation-damaging data breaches. But in the highly competitive landscape of online retailers and e-commerce, customers not only demand security, but flawless performance. That’s why merchants must take care to choose a provider whose approach to compliance and security will not threaten their customer experience.
Since Azion is certified as a service provider at the highest level of compliance, businesses small and large can simplify their PCI audits by choosing us as a service provider. This enables them to leverage our compliance level in their PCI certification process while getting all the performance benefits of our edge platform. Moreover, our PCI compliance extends across all our edge platform solutions, enabling our customers to achieve compliance without the performance issues that can occur with other providers’ solutions.
The Azion Advantage
PCI compliance requirements extend across the entire ecosystem of credit card transactions. This means every data center, point of presence, or edge location where data is processed must meet PCI-DSS security requirements, such as tracking and monitoring access to network resources and cardholder data and encrypting data across public networks. But for many CDNs, points of presence are composed of caching servers with very limited resources; storing all their clients’ sensitive data on these machines would require significantly more computational power. To alleviate this burden, CDNs either segregate sensitive data on a separate network or pass it on to their customers’ origins.
In both cases, performance suffers. Diverting traffic to a separate network increases the distance data has to travel, resulting in added latency. Serving sensitive data directly to customers’ origin not only increases the distance data has to travel, but increases the load on origin servers. During peak traffic times, this can result in slower load times or even site outages if origin servers are not able to handle the extra load.
Even worse, these performance risks threaten to compromise the customer’s journey at the worst possible time for online retailers. E-commerce has notoriously narrow profit margins, making peak shopping times like Black Friday and Cyber Monday crucial to their business. On Thanksgiving and Black Friday 2019, an outage on Costco’s website that lasted 16 hours cost the company an estimated 11.9 million in sales, according to Business Insider. In addition, the parts of an application or site that involve sensitive data are the most crucial moments in the customer journey, prolonging the checkout process and potentially leading to cart abandonment.
In today’s competitive e-commerce landscape, companies cannot afford these kinds of missed opportunities. The checkout process should not only be secure, but high-performing—requiring that data is always delivered as close to end users as possible. With this in mind, Azion invested in the effort to gain PCI certification across our entire edge platform, enabling our clients to build fast, secure checkout solutions that their customers will love.
Although PCI compliance is required for e-commerce, all digital businesses can benefit from using a PCI-certified provider. By providing a higher standard of security, PCI compliance reduces the likelihood of data breaches, elevates user trust, and enables industry-specific use cases, like securing patient data for healthcare companies or enabling online tuition payments for educational groups.
Use Cases and More Information
As a PCI-DSS Level 1 Service Provider, Azion keeps your valuable data secure across all edge locations, without compromising your site’s performance. As a result, you can:
- Simplify PCI audits
- Maintain the highest level of compliance
- Enhance user confidence
- Cache payment credentials or other sensitive data
- Keep your checkout process fast and performant
For more information on our PCI certification, visit our PCI page here.