Blog on cybersecurity in payment industry
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Cyber security in Payment Card Industry


Posted by: Kaushal Meher Date: 17 Mar 2023

The payment card industry (PCI) has been growing at a rapid pace in India, with the increasing popularity of digital payment methods. The use of payment cards, including credit, debit, and prepaid cards, has become a common practice for consumers to make purchases online or in-store. However, with the rise of these transactions, the risk of cybercrime has also increased, making cyber security a significant concern for the payment card industry in India. In this blog, we will discuss the key aspects of cyber security in the payment card industry in India.

Threats and Risks

Cyber threats and risks in the payment card industry in India can be classified into two main categories: internal and external threats. Internal threats include threats that come from within an organization, such as employee negligence or intentional actions, while external threats refer to threats from outside the organization, such as hacking, phishing, or skimming.

One of the most significant risks faced by the payment card industry in India is card skimming, which involves the use of a device that can copy data from a card's magnetic stripe. This data can then be used to create a duplicate card or make unauthorized transactions. In addition, phishing attacks that trick users into revealing their card details are also a common threat.

Security Standards and Regulations

To combat cyber threats and risks, the payment card industry in India follows strict security standards and regulations set by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC). The PCI SSC has developed a set of security standards called the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS), which define the requirements for protecting cardholder data.

All merchants, financial institutions, and service providers involved in the payment card industry in India must comply with PCI DSS. Failure to comply with PCI DSS can result in hefty fines and other penalties.

PCI DSS consists of six main objectives that include requirements for maintaining secure networks, protecting cardholder data, maintaining vulnerability management programs, implementing access control measures, regularly monitoring, and testing networks, and maintaining an information security policy.

Best Practices for Cyber Security

In addition to complying with PCI DSS, there are several best practices that organizations in the payment card industry in India can adopt to enhance their cyber security:

  • Implement multi-factor authentication: multi-factor authentication adds an extra layer of security to user accounts by requiring users to provide two or more forms of identification before gaining access.
  • Regularly update software and security patches: Software and security patches often contain bug fixes and security enhancements that can protect against known vulnerabilities.
  • Conduct regular security audits: Regular security audits can help identify weaknesses and vulnerabilities in an organization's systems and processes.
  • Educate employees on cyber security: Educating employees on cyber security best practices can help prevent internal threats caused by employee negligence.
  • Develop an incident response plan: Developing an incident response plan can help organizations respond quickly and effectively to a cyber-attack.


Cyber security is a critical concern for the payment card industry in India. The growing use of payment cards for online and offline transactions has made it essential for organizations to implement robust security measures to protect cardholder data. Compliance with PCI DSS and the adoption of best practices such as multi-factor authentication, regular software updates, security audits, and employee education can help enhance cyber security in the payment card industry in India. By taking these steps, organizations can ensure that they are better equipped to prevent, detect, and respond to cyber threats and risks.

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