PCI guidelines issued for mobile apps

Powered by SC Magazine
 

Developers told to isolate sensitive functions, remove unnecessary access rights.

The Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC), an industry body which manages payment data security guidelines, released best practices for mobile app developers and device manufacturers.

The main focus of the guidelines is to provide direction on securing mobile device payment processes, as well as the payment environment itself, by educating developers in the emerging mobile app market.

Bob Russo, the general manager of the PCI SSC, told SC the guidelines are particularly relevant today.

“I tell people that convenience trumps security all the time, and people are running quickly to use these new devices and technology, without even thinking about security,” Russo said. “This guidance is actually for the developers of those devices. We are purposely being cautious. It's such a changing market – you'll put something out today and tomorrow people are using it.”

Mobile devices have become payment vehicles and, accordingly, warrant strategies for security, he added.

Key recommendations of the report include isolating sensitive functions and data in trusted environments, implementing secure coding best practices and eliminating unnecessary third-party access and privilege escalation. Developing ways to remotely disable payment functions, in addition to creating tools for mobile apps to monitor and report suspicious activity were also among the recommendations.

The guidelines focus on ways to prevent account data from being intercepted while sent or received on mobile devices or from being compromised while being processed or stored on them.

Troy Leach, the chief technology officer of the council, told SCMagazine.com on Friday that the most recent guidelines reinforce the council's standard payment security goals, while applying them to a mobile space.

“We have a brand new group of developers that aren't of aware of their responsibility,” Leach said. “They are designing good code, but don't know all it's being used for.”

Malware, rootkits used by criminals and jailbreaking vulnerabilities are just some of the threats that can comprise the security of payments transmitted through mobile devices and apps.

David Thiel, the vice president for iSEC Partners, which provides mobile security consulting, told SCMagazine.com on Friday that a common problem in mobile app security is personal data being unintentionally leaked to local storage on devices, which can then be retrieved by attackers using malicious software on jailbroken phones.

“It's still a relatively immature field in terms of security development best practices, so its not quite to the level that a lot of big name software packages have been,” Thiel said of the app development market.  

PCI SSC also recently announced a new qualification program, called the PCI Professional (PCIP) Program, for IT professionals to receive certification for PCI payment security standards.

This article originally appeared at scmagazineus.com

Copyright © SC Magazine, US edition


PCI guidelines issued for mobile apps
 
 
 
Top Stories
Content, cost & constant innovation: How Foxtel plans to take on Netflix
Nell Payne inhabits the “brave new world of blue strings and networking”. Just don't ask her to put a TV screen on your microwave.
 
Sending in the drones
Margins are getting tighter in the industrial services industry, so Transfield Services' Stephen Phillips looks offshore - and to the skies - for the solutions he needs to keep pace.
 
Westpac fires starting pistol on core banking upgrade
St George readies itself for move to Celeriti.
 
 
Sign up to receive iTnews email bulletins
   FOLLOW US...
Latest articles on BIT Latest Articles from BIT
Microsoft launches Office for Android preview
May 22, 2015
Microsoft has launched a preview of Office for Android smartphones. Pre-release versions of ...
Microsoft is working on an iOS email chat feature called Flow
May 22, 2015
Microsoft is working on a new chat app, but at the moment we know more about what we DON'T know, ...
Windows 10 free upgrade: Microsoft details who gets what
May 22, 2015
Microsoft was meant to be streamlining its OS with Windows 10, so why is upgrading so confusing? ...
Windows 10 has an edition to suit everyone's needs
May 15, 2015
Microsoft unveils a mind-melting six editions of Windows 10 ahead of its Winter 2015 launch. ...
Firefox 38 FINAL released, debuts new tab-based preferences
May 13, 2015
Mozilla has unveiled the latest version of Firefox 38.0 FINAL for desktop, with Firefox for ...
Latest Comments
Polls
Should Optus make a bid for iiNet?

   |   View results
Yes
  43%
 
No
  57%
TOTAL VOTES: 534

Vote