For many organizations, the thought of maintaining compliance with regulations specific to their industry immediately brings up visions of spending huge amounts of money and devoting countless hours to compliance projects. However, once you dig into the specifics of the frameworks that apply to your business, you’ll see that many of the requirements will overlap. And once those are identified, the time, effort and – most critically, money – you’ll need to devote to your compliance journey can be cut down.

For example, Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) have many similarities between them. In fact, when you achieve compliance with PCI DSS, you comply with GDPR mandates in several areas.  

If an organization is already meeting PCI DSS requirements, it can leverage many of those features to achieve GDPR compliance.  

For example, both GDPR and PCI DSS require strong and effective security measures to be implemented for maximum data protection. In both cases, organizations are required to adopt techniques like encryption or tokenization to protect the data throughout its lifecycle. Techniques like this are highly effective for securing sensitive data and preventing unauthorized access or tampering with information. The PCI DSS and GDPR call for reasonable data security, specifically, recommending technologies and tokenization to meet security demands. As a result, they can be adopted for both standards for maximum data protection.  

It is essential that organizations regularly perform risk assessments and data impact assessments, which are both required under PCI DSS and GDPR. While PCI DSS clearly outlines guidelines for implementing procedures and frequencies of assessments, this can be leveraged for meeting Data Protection Impact Assessments, a mandate under GDPR.  

Implementing access control measures also ensures compliance with both PCI DSS and GDPR. Security policies and procedures for data security under PCI DSS also apply to GDPR – to an extent. Data security policy and procedure requirements such as maintaining the documentation of all data processing activities, access control policies, security policies and data assessments policies for PCI DSS can be used to meet the GDPR data security requirements.  

Maintaining an access log is another requirement outlined in both PCI DSS and GDPR. Since PCI DSS requires organizations to maintain logs and review regularly, automatically comply with GDPR’s requirements for maintaining logs of data access to personal information.  

For data breach notifications, there is an obligation to notify supervisory authorities under GDPR and payment processors under PCI DSS. Also, having an incident management and response process in place in case of a data breach is equally important for both regulations, as well as financial penalties and fines involved in case of a data breach.  

Even with overlapping requirements, achieving and maintaining compliance with your industry’s regulations can be a cumbersome task for your organization. 2W Tech can help. We have a robust Cybersecurity Compliance program designed to support our clients’ compliance obligations. Contact us today get started.

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