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Mark HickmanFor industries across all verticals, falling victim to a data breach is considered the ultimate kiss of death. Aside from having to deal with the aftermath of a damaged reputation, the costs and labor required to clean up the mess aren’t worth the risk of casting a blind eye to better security.

For financial institutions in particular, government and industry mandates are a major driving force behind the need to better protect an organization’s data – both corporate, as well as customer. There are ways in which these companies can ensure the protection of their data and prevent the occurrence of a targeted data breach.

A number of major players in the financial space have been working to fight back against these criminals. Since 2004, leading brands like American Express, JCB International, Discover Financial Services, Visa Inc. and MasterCard Worldwide have formed the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council; working together, this group has agreed to incorporate the Payment Care Industry Data Security Standard as a technical requirement for each of their data security and compliance programs. Some of these requirements include implementing strong access control measures, regularly monitoring and testing networks and protecting cardholder data.

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