Credit card data breaches becoming less common for compliant firms

Data breaches that could result in consumers’ private information being used to accrue fraudulent credit card debt are slowly decreasing for companies that are compliant with the latest protection methods.

In 2010, 64 percent of companies that are compliant with current Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards did not suffer a data breach involving credit card information, according to the latest annual statistics from the Ponemon Institute and Imperva. However, just 38 percent of those companies that were not in compliance with PCI-DSS reported a similarly successful year.

“At the end of the day, we believe that PCI-DSS is one of the most effective data security regulations today and can significantly help companies improve their data security posture,” said Amichai Shulman, co-founder and CTO of Imperva. “Most companies who make an effort to comply with the standards are likely to suffer fewer breaches than those who don’t, period.”

Many data breaches are not caused by companies being targeted by hackers, but rather an employee or system error that accidentally exposes consumers’ personal and financial data.