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PCI 3.1 Compliance Deadline is Here

09/09/2015  |  By: Stewart Fey, Director of Technical Services


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Recently, the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) introduced the latest compliance changes with its 3.1 version. The deadline for updating to PCI 3.1 is immediately. Now that the dust has settled, here's what you need to know about it.

Under PCI 3.1, Secure Socket Layer (SSL) 3.0 and Transport Layer Security (TLS) 1.0 are no longer considered effective methods of encryption and should be disabled. This applies to Point of Sale (POS) devices as well. POS transmissions, incoming from customers and outgoing to your credit card processor must be encrypted and can no longer use SSL 3.0 /TLS 1.0.

Time is of the essence, since organizations are expected to implement the PCI 3.1 changes immediately. However, there is a grace period provided your organization adheres to certain conditions.

  • At a minimum, your organization must supply a detailed upgrade plan in writing. It should clearly outline how your organization will execute the above changes by June 30, 2016.

Not sure which SSL/TLS version your organization is currently using?

Visit to test your Internet-facing e-commerce systems. You’ll be able to confirm if your SSL/TLS version is 3.0/1.0 or older.

If you’ve determined that your SSL/TLS version isn’t PCI 3.1 compliant, the next step would be to disable all versions of SSL and any versions of TLS older than 1.1.

One caveat – Older Internet Explorer versions might not have a TLS protocol-enabled by default. If that’s the case, you’ll need to enable the TLS protocol first before you can disable SSL versions 2.0 or 3.0.

Regardless of whether you address the PCI 3.1 upgrade immediately or by the June 30, 2016 deadline, every organization and its people, partners and vendors must comply. The sooner, the better. PCI 3.1 compliance strengthens security across the board.

Many organizations find the process too daunting or time-consuming to handle on their own. If that’s the case, consider working with an outside consultant well versed in PCI 3.1 compliance. They can assess your current systems, explain the requirements in more detail and walk you through the process to meet compliance standards in a timely and effective manner.

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LBMC Information Security reviews compliance efforts, can test to assure compliance and can help your team develop an action plan to remediate compliance. If you have questions, please contact us. Learn more about our PCI Compliance services.

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Posted in: PCI Compliance