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There is no shortage of opinions within the payments industry regarding PCI-DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards), and these opinions are largely driven by perspective. Issuers support PCI-DSS and demand improved compliance since they are the ones that absorb the brunt of fraud losses and operational damage control in the wake of data compromises. Merchants and acquirers appear less supportive of the standards and continue to assert concerns about complex requirements and costly compliance.

Visa and MasterCard are in the awkward position of trying to enforce compliance while straddling a two-sided business model that requires serving both merchants and issuers. Furthermore, other issues the card companies are juggling, like interchange rates, create a greater divide between these two groups and crowd out constructive discussion and real progress on PCI-DSS.

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