| | NOVEMBER 20199solutions that enable them to ac-cept contactless payments on their devices and trust that these transactions are secure. This pro-vides opportunities for more busi-nesses, and especially those not based in a fixed location or new to card acceptance, to be able to accept contactless payments in a secure manner. At the very minimum, every business using any form of digital payments should have at least one member of staff who is appropri-ately trained in security standards to protect their business. For the smallest businesses, this may even be the founder, and entrepreneurs must realise that the responsibil-ity to safeguard their customer payment data could be theirs. For larger, more developed businesses, executives should be hiring or training data security professionals, or Internal Security Assessors, within their businesses to ensure that there are individu-als capable of deploying up-to-date standards to protect themselves against cybercriminals.Crucially, data security is not a one-time fix. As payments and technology evolve, and cyber-criminals become smarter, so do methods of data theft, and so do security standards. Data security is an ongoing process which must be constantly updated.Data Security is a Requirement for SuccessOne thing that business owners and decision makers in India must consider is a change of attitude about digital payments for their business. Digital payments can be extremely profitable, of course, and for the majority, implement-ing these methods can be seen as a one-way ticket to increasing cus-tomer catchment area. However, Indian business own-ers must realise that implement-ing new payment methods must be complemented with the appro-priate security standards. Without the standards, sooner or later, a data breach is almost inevitable. Hackers are constantly probing businesses for security weakness-es, and as soon as they find one without safeguards, they will infiltrate its computer systems and steal customer payment data for profit.And for a business whose cus-tomer payment data is stolen, the results can be catastrophic. Many businesses whose data is stolen will go out of business within 12 months of the cyberattack, and those that do not go out of busi-ness can suffer severe reputation-al damage that takes many years to recover from. Entrepreneurs must not be Deterred!This should not deter entrepre-neurs, and experts are clear that digital payments are the future for India. During a video address at the PCI SSC 2019 India Forum in Delhi, Indian entrepreneur Nan-dan Nilekani emphasized that ac-ceptance of digital payments tech-nology by both merchants and consumers is vital for economic growth, but knowledge sharing and education about data security are vital to success.A less-cash economy rep-resents a fantastic opportunity for business growth in India. Howev-er, companies need to ensure that they are reducing the number of opportunities where cybercrimi-nals can steal payment data. Busi-ness leaders who can effectively implement security standards and train personnel to maintain the standards will be tomorrow's cap-tains of commerce. BUSINESS LEADERS WHO CAN EFFECTIVELY IMPLEMENT SECURITY STANDARDS AND TRAIN PERSONNEL TO MAINTAIN THE STANDARDS WILL BE TOMORROW'S CAPTAINS OF COMMERCENitin Bhatnagar, Associate Director
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