Security Researchers in the UK say that the 3-D Secure (3DS) system for credit card authorization, a protocol that was “developed by Visa to improve the security of Internet payments,” has significant security weaknesses. It is used by both of the ginormous card brands, known as “Verified by Visa” and “MasterCard SecureCode.”
On Jan 25th, the PCI Security Standards Council, a global, open industry standards body providing management of the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), PIN Transaction Security (PTS) Security Requirements and the Payment Application Data Security Standard (PA-DSS), announced that Bruce Rutherford, group head, fraud management solutions, payment system integrity, MasterCard, has been appointed as the new chairperson of the PCI Security Standards Council. Rutherford will steer the Council as it works with industry stakeholders to create and release new standards in 2010.
MasterCard’s decision to reverse itself on its end of year 2010 deadline for new Level 2 PCI requirements was not based on retail complaints or on avoiding the hectic holiday period for merchants, according to a key MasterCard manager heading up the effort. Instead, the change was based on giving retailers more time to work with a new PCI training program, he said.
The first MasterCard change made this month was pushing the Dec. 31, 2010, deadline back six months, to June 30, 2011. But MasterCard has also made two other key PCI changes. It has redefined what Level a retailer is (Level 1, 2, 3 or 4) to explicitly mirror whatever level Visa has determined. (The language used to say “competing brand.”) The last of the changes is to allow Level 1 and Level 2 retailers to perform their own assessments—using the retailer’s own salaried audit staff—as long as those audit staffers have passed PCI-approved training courses.
Many Level 2 merchants are just now realizing that their PCI world has changed. Under rules announced this summer, Level 2 MasterCard merchants—like their Level 1 brethren—will require an onsite assessment by a QSA starting in 2010.
People don’t seem to “get” MasterCard. For most of the last 4 years, MasterCard has been criticized for their apparent willingness to let Visa play the “bad guy” who issues fines to acquiring banks (and, through them, to merchants), who extends the PCI standards to application vendors (through PABP, now PA-DSS) and who generally takes the heat for PCI.
The noncompliance assessment structure now contains escalating assessments per violation within a calendar year,” said the document sent to members earlier this summer. “Maximum assessments for initial noncompliance for Level 2 and Level 3 merchants have increased to $25,000 and $10,000, respectively. Furthermore, the $500,000 annual aggregate maximum for acquirer noncompliance assessments related to program noncompliance has been discontinued.
MasterCard today clarified a June 15 bulletin about the use of remote key injection (RKI) services for upgrading encryption protocols on merchants’ point of sale (POS) terminals, saying it was not an edict.
In a purported second major security change in recent weeks, MasterCard has decided to disallow merchants’ use of remote key injection (RKI) services to install new encryption keys on point-of-sale (POS) systems, says a Gartner analyst.