Security provider Ward Solutions invests £220,000 to launch new service

Paul Hogan, chief technology officer at Ward Solutions

INFORMATION security provider Ward Solutions has launched a new Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) consultancy service and predicts that it will generate £750,000 in revenue in the next 12 months.

PCI DSS was introduced to reduce card fraud and enhance security when businesses are processing card payments.

Prior to that, cardholders and card brands themselves were much more vulnerable to serious crimes such as data theft and fraud, and cyber-criminals used a range of tactics such as hacking, malware or social engineering to access and steal funds.

The standard is backed by major brands such as Visa, MasterCard and American Express, and all merchants who accept card payments must now demonstrate compliance, regardless of their size.

Although it focuses specifically on payment card data, PCI DSS provides a good framework for companies working towards compliance to the impending General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), set to come into force on May 25 next.

Ward Solutions' new service will guide payment processors through the complex process of becoming PCI DSS compliant and help them to better protect the customers who rely on their services.

Ward, which has offices in Belfast, Dublin and Ennis, has invested £220,000 in designing and developing the new service and training its employees to the highest levels on the requirements of the standard at security centres of excellence around the world.

The new service includes a remote support help-desk, and three of Ward's team are now certified as quality security assessors (QSA), with this number to grow to ten in 2018.

Paul Hogan of Ward Solutions said: “As a merchant, displaying compliance to the PCI standard demonstrates to customers, vendors and suppliers your dedication to card-holder privacy.

"Adherence to the standard is mandatory for any merchant that accepts credit cards as a form of payment. Ward's new service will steer businesses through the complex process towards becoming compliant across all areas of their business.

“As our expert team now includes certified QSAs, merchants who avail of this new service can rest assured that they are receiving specialist advice.

"Customers will also benefit from Ward's significant experience in the security sector. As a full information security life-cycle company, we can provide consultation above and beyond the risk-prevention advice on offer from other companies in the market, and help businesses to quickly and efficiently achieve the Data Security Standard.”

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