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Ultimate Compliance Comparison

SOC 2 versus PCI-DSS

Explore the differences between SOC 2 and PCI-DSS. 


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Explore and contrast SOC 2 and PCI-DSS

SOC 2 and PCI-DSS are two different security standards that organizations use to protect their data and systems. SOC 2 focuses on the internal controls of an organization, while PCI-DSS focuses on the security of payment card data. SOC 2 is more flexible, allowing organizations to tailor their compliance to their specific needs, while PCI-DSS is more prescriptive and requires organizations to meet specific requirements. Both standards are designed to protect sensitive data, but each has its own set of requirements and focuses on different aspects of security.

What is SOC 2?

SOC 2 is a set of standards and guidelines developed by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) to help organizations ensure the security, availability, and privacy of their systems and data. The standards are based on the five Trust Services Principles of Security, Availability, Processing Integrity, Confidentiality, and Privacy. SOC 2 is designed to help organizations demonstrate that they have the necessary controls in place to meet the requirements of their customers, partners, and regulators. The report generated from a SOC 2 audit can be used as evidence of a company’s commitment to security, availability, and privacy.

What is PCI-DSS?

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) is a set of security standards designed to ensure that all companies that process, store or transmit credit card information maintain a secure environment. The standards are administered and managed by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC). The current version of the PCI-DSS is version 3.2.1, released in April 2018. The PCI-DSS covers a wide range of topics, including network and software security, access control, encryption, data protection, and incident response. The standard is designed to protect the integrity of credit card data and to prevent fraud. It also provides guidance on how to protect cardholder data from unauthorized access. The PCI-DSS is a set of requirements that all organizations that process, store or transmit credit card information must adhere to. Organizations must also ensure that their service providers are compliant. Failure to comply with the PCI-DSS can result in serious penalties, including fines, loss of merchant privileges, or even criminal prosecution.

A Comparison Between SOC 2 and PCI-DSS

1. Both SOC 2 and PCI-DSS are compliance standards that organizations must adhere to in order to protect sensitive customer data.

2. Both standards have requirements for security, availability, and confidentiality of customer data.

3. Both standards require organizations to implement processes, procedures, and controls to protect customer data.

4. Both standards require organizations to regularly monitor and audit their systems to ensure compliance.

5. Both standards require organizations to have a risk assessment process in place to identify and mitigate risks.

The Key Differences Between SOC 2 and PCI-DSS

1. Scope: SOC 2 focuses on the internal controls of an organization, while PCI-DSS focuses on protecting cardholder data.

2. Audience: SOC 2 is intended for internal stakeholders, while PCI-DSS is intended for merchants and service providers that process, store, or transmit cardholder data.

3. Reporting: SOC 2 provides a report on the design and effectiveness of the controls, while PCI-DSS provides a report on the compliance status of the organization.

4. Compliance: SOC 2 is a voluntary compliance standard, while PCI-DSS is a mandatory compliance standard.

5. Requirements: SOC 2 has more stringent requirements than PCI-DSS, such as the requirement to have a written information security program.

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