PCI DSS Compliance

Scope, Preparedness, Remediation, Validation for PCI Compliance

PCI DSS v4.0 is live.

Given the huge volume of online purchases, online financial transactions and banking inquiries, PCI compliance is critical to both protect consumers and ensure companies are doing enough to safeguard payment card data. The problem? PCI DSS compliance is both complex and constantly changing, rendering even seasoned IT teams challenged to navigate it.

To satisfy PCI DSS requirements, companies must address specific concerns, including:

  • Scope Optimization. Determine the scope of the current PCI DSS cardholder data environment and identify the best strategy for optimizing that scope to satisfy business needs and drivers.
  • Cardholder Data Removal. As appropriate, organizations must remove credit card data to meet business and legal requirements and ensure it is not recoverable.
  • Closing Compliance Gaps. To achieve PCI DSS compliance, all applicable requirements must be addressed. HALOCK will help ensure that your remediation efforts meet PCI compliance requirements.

HALOCK Security Labs offers PCI compliance solutions, assisting organizations in meeting PCI DSS requirements by helping them determine how the standard applies to them; providing guidance throughout the remediation process to close any compliance gaps; validating compliance; and preparing and submitting required validation paperwork. With help from HALOCK, you can quickly answer critical PCI questions.

Consider see what new requirements that impact your compliance with PCI DSS v4.0 and when they should be in place.


“Extremely happy with the services. Exceed expectations in all areas of the project

– Chocolate company


PCI Credit Card Risk

PCI compliance

Am I PCI Compliant?

Perhaps you’ve already made efforts to satisfy PCI DSS requirements, but aren’t sure if you’re hitting the mark. HALOCK will conduct a complete PCI compliance assessment for your organization and each applicable DSS requirement to help you determine if you are ready to validate compliance.

PCI Credit Card POS

How Do I Show PCI Compliance?

Different transaction volumes and types require different demonstrations of PCI compliance. Whether your transaction volume demands a full on-site assessment and PCI DSS Report on Compliance (ROC), or you need to fill out a Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ), our Qualified Security Assessors (QSAs) help you compile the required evidence, audit security controls, and author the appropriate compliance reports to register and demonstrate your PCI DSS compliance.

PCI Merchant

How Do I Stay PCI Compliant?

While achieving PCI compliance is a point-in-time event, adhering to specific regulations and maintaining PCI DSS compliance are continuous processes. From providing ad hoc counseling and advisory services to facilitating continual development with a certified PCI compliance consultant, HALOCK has the experience and expertise to get you compliant and help you stay compliant over time.

Tokenization PCI DSS

PCI Scope Definition

Scoping for PCI DSS compliance is one of the more important and difficult efforts when it comes to properly addressing PCI compliance. When it comes to reducing the scope of PCI DSS compliance, organizations have several options that should be considered. These options are not mutually exclusive and can be combined to address PCI DSS compliance obligations and/or reduce the environment that the PCI DSS requirements apply to. Organizations need to understand that all credit card acceptance channels need to be considered when reducing scope.

HALOCK’s QSAs work with client’s staff to review the flow of credit card data through the network and which system components are involved in storing, processing or transmitting that data.

Reasonable Security PCI DSS Scoping

Using the information collected in the previous step, HALOCK QSAs determine the preliminary scope of the client’s PCI DSS cardholder data environment, identify risk factors related to the current PCI DSS compliance scope and provide recommendations for optimizing scope.

If an organization is wanting to achieve PCI DSS compliance through scope reduction techniques, HALOCK recommends staring with this effort to optimize scope and determine which PCI DSS requirements would remain applicable to the organization.

Online Purchase PCI DSS Risk

PCI Preparedness Assessment

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) consists of over 200 technical and operational requirements and can apply not only to your IT environment, but also to your core business. Through our PCI DSS compliance consulting services and preparedness assessment offering, HALOCK helps you determine the appropriate scope of PCI compliance for your organization, make recommendations on how to control and reduce that scope, and become informed about how well you comply with today’s PCI DSS.

Reasonable Security PCI DSS Prepared

Like any journey, the path to PCI compliance has a starting point and a finish line with many stops and hurdles along the way. HALOCK helps you identify where you are today with regard to PCI regulations and maps out the most effective path to get you to your goal. HALOCK can also tailor a PCI remediation roadmap that outlines every step of your unique journey to PCI compliance.

Payment Card POS

PCI Remediation

You’ve assessed your PCI compliance profile and have identified the gaps preventing you from being PCI compliant. How do you get from here to the finish line? HALOCK offers a full suite of PCI compliance remediation and security program management solutions to help you identify and close those PCI compliance gaps.

HALOCK’s security engineers will work closely with your staff to identify and implement the appropriate technical solutions to help you achieve your goal. In addition, our PCI compliance consultants can help you manage your remediation efforts via security project management and portfolio management, business analysis and process improvement, or even our Virtual Chief Information Security Officer (vCISO) service.

Payments PCI DSS Risk

PCI Validation

Validation takes place through an Onsite Assessment and Report on Compliance (for organizations with a large transaction volume), or a Self-Assessment Questionnaire. Regardless of which requirement applies to you, our Qualified Security Advisors (QSAs) can help you compile the required evidence, audit security controls, and author the appropriate compliance reports to register and demonstrate your PCI DSS compliance.

Our clients choose HALOCK for onsite PCI compliance assessments and Report on Compliance for the following reasons:

  • Deep technical and operational understanding of PCI DSS requirements
  • Proven methods, efficient tools and a tested delivery process
  • Dedicated QSAs and PCI compliance consultants for your assessment program
  • Integration with the HALOCK Penetration Testing team
  • Purpose Driven Security® that focuses our attention on the underlying intent of each requirement as it relates to the particular circumstances of your business; establishing ‘reasonable’ security controls based upon an organization’s mission, objective, and obligations
Cyber Security PCI DSS QSA

As of PCI DSS v3.2, over 50 compliance activities specifically require ongoing operational efforts to monitor compliance. The most common causes for noncompliance during the annual onsite validation relate to control failures related to these activities. The Compliance Maintenance Program is conducted on a regular basis to monitor and assess recurring compliance activities. The efforts performed under this program support PCI DSS “Business as Usual” activities, establish a proactive approach to validating required PCI compliance activities, and identify control failures in a timely manner that otherwise would result in non-compliance.

Reasonable Security PCI DSS Case Study University
CASE STUDY: Research University

HALOCK’s Purpose Driven Security® philosophy and approach help you achieve and maintain PCI compliance in a manner that is aligned with your mission. Regardless of the state of your current PCI compliance requirements  and ongoing business needs, HALOCK can help your organization meet PCI compliance goals. Our QSAs are experienced PCI security consultants who will help with all your PCI compliance assessment, remediation, validation and maintenance efforts.


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– Transportation company

duty of care, PCI DSS, PCI SSC, QSA, Payment, Process, Remote
PCI DSS Compliance

Download the PCI DSS Compliance Brochure.


The HALOCK Security Briefing is a review of significant events, trends, and movements that will influence how you manage cybersecurity, risk, and compliance. Our clients receive periodic overviews with an extensive report file on the topics discussed. This insightful document also includes reference links throughout the report for easy navigation and deeper research. 


Estimate risk based on real threat data. Read Appendix D in the 2024 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) to augment your risk analysis.

HALOCK is a risk management and cybersecurity firm headquartered outside of Chicago in Schaumburg, IL, and advises clients on PCI DSS compliance solutions, including reasonable information security strategies and programs for risk management, third-party risk management, incident response readiness, threat hunting or managed detection and response (MDR), ransomware risk assessment, penetration testing, sensitive data management and scanning, and more throughout the US.

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