PCI DSS Compliance

Encryption, Hashing, and Tokenization

Per every Experian industry forecast in the last five years, the number of data breaches will continue to rise. IBM and Ponemon Institute studies of data breaches reveal that the average cost to a US organization exceeds $200 for each compromised customer record. With an average of 29,000 records compromised per incident, the cost of a data breach can reach well over $5 million.


In addition to the significant financial harm that results from a data breach, there is an acute loss of trust between an organization and its customers. Both the breach and the fallout are usally well publicized and long remembered.


To mitigate the effects of data breaches, and help BFSI and other organizations managing credit card data comply with PCI DSS rules, the data masking functions in IRI Data Protector Suite products -- or the IRI Voracity platform -- protect primary account number (PAN), or credit card number values (along with other data at risk) in multiple data sources.


The appplicable field-level security functions are strong encryption, SHA-2 cryptographic hashing, and tokenization.


For example, IRI FieldShield GUI users apply their choice of protection functions to PAN and other columns in an intuitive, efficient, and flexible manner under Eclipse. For example, specification of an encryption cipher with a pass-phrase occurs in a simple dialog:

Here, format-preserving encryption is used to comply with PCI, to ensure that no changes are required to the table or database structure, and to possibly deceive hackers into thinking they have actual PANs.

These easy, yet powerful functions can also help you limit the financial and operational impact of a data breach. For example, Steam, a gaming distribution platform, suffered a data breach. As significant as the breach was, the overall impact to Steam was limited because the credit card values were encrypted.


FieldShield and the other IRI software products which have its startpoint protection functions thus provide simplicity, affordability, and peace-of-mind in securing credit card data at rest. They help organizations meet the PCI DSS v3 requirements for protecting stored cardholder data, while mitigating the risk of data loss.