Secure payment gateway
What is a secure payment gateway, and who needs it?
A payment gateway is a technology that allows merchants to accept and process online transactions securely. We can compare it to a regular POS terminal that merchants use for accepting debit/credit cards in brick-and-mortar stores, but a payment gateway is designed for digital transactions. It transmits payment information between all parties involved in an electronic transaction, ensuring secure processing using security technologies such as tokenisation, SSL, and others.
Let's find out exactly how the payment gateway is involved in an online transaction:
- A customer makes an order on a merchant’s website, selects a preferred payment method and enters debit/credit card details on a checkout page.
- A payment gateway receives the information, encrypts it, and sends an authorisation request to the acquiring bank.
- The acquirer sends a request to the card network (Visa, Mastercard, or other) serving the cardholder.
- The card network contacts a customer’s issuing bank to check if the card is valid and if there’re enough funds to withdraw.
- The issuer authorises the transaction and sends a confirmation to the acquiring bank via the payment gateway.
- The payment gateway informs the customer of a successful transaction. After this, the funds will be debited from the customer's account and credited to the merchant account.
Thus, a secure payment gateway accompanies each transaction from start to finish, ensuring the protection of confidential card data and reducing the risk of breaches and fraudulent interventions. Any business that plans to accept online payments needs a secure gateway that will protect its client's processing data in the best possible way. However, security is far from the only advantage of payment gateways because they also help merchants gain a foothold in the market by accepting multiple currencies and payment types. It is an indispensable solution for e-commerce retailers, marketplaces, ticket platforms, and other businesses.
How to ensure payment gateway security?
A payment gateway performs several basic functions, such as authentication, encryption, routing and notification. It essentially acts as an intermediary between the customer and merchant, taking all necessary security measures to ensure that the payment is fully protected from fraud or identity theft. To achieve this, different fraud detection methods are applied at each stage of transaction processing. The more tools your payment gateway provider has, the better protection of your customers' confidential transaction data will be. Let’s consider each method separately.
Secure Sockets Layer/Transport Layer Security Protocol is an encryption-based security protocol developed to ensure the privacy of data transmitted across the web. It ensures data safety during the transfer, guaranteeing a secure connection between the server and the client’s browser. The use of SSL/TLS is essential for a secure payment gateway, as anyone trying to intercept data will see a random mix of characters that cannot be deciphered. Thus, if a customer enters their card details on a website but no protocol has been used, the information will pass through the payment gateway unprotected and could be easily intercepted by fraudsters. SSL/TLS, for its part, makes it nearly impossible to steal the data.
The PCI DSS is a set of security standards formed in 2004 by major credit card companies, namely Visa, Mastercard, Discover, American Express, and JCB. The main goal of the standard is to prevent data theft and fraud associated with debit and credit card transactions. The PCI DSS puts forward rather rigorous requirements for companies' security where payment information is transferred, processed or stored. PCI DSS compliance can prevent many risks associated with breaches of confidential data of their customers to third parties and using it for fraudulent purposes. To keep everything encrypted and secure, e-commerce retailers engage a PCI-compliant and secure online payment gateway in transaction processing.
Tokenisation is a type of encryption in which confidential card data is exchanged for a special token. Tokenisation technology allows replacing the real client card number with a unique generated code — a token that will be used only for a specific purchase. It makes no sense for fraudsters to intercept tokens because they will not work on other websites. Tokenisation is a must for a secure online payment gateway.
3D Secure is an authentication protocol that provides an additional layer of verification for card-not-present transactions. This technology has been specially designed to improve the security of online payments. The name of the Three-Domain Secure method arose because three domains are involved in an online transaction: a merchant or acquirer’s domain, where payment data is entered, the card network’s domain that redirects the payment to the confirmation page with a password or one-time code and the issuer's domain that confirms the transaction.
Anti-fraud is a comprehensive fraud monitoring and prevention system that verifies every transaction which goes through the payment gateway in real time. Modern anti-fraud systems consider many parameters to determine suspicious transactions, for example, amount, unique bank card token, user's digital fingerprint, the IP address through which the payment is made, etc. Each anti-fraud system uses its own rules and filters, as well as machine learning technologies to detect and block fraudulent activities.
As we can see, payment gateway security technologies do not stand still, offering merchants and customers almost guaranteed confidentiality. It is worth remembering, however, that e-commerce fraud still occurs. This mainly happens because the processor neglects the payment gateway security standards. That’s why we recommend partnering with reputable payment gateway providers with robust security infrastructure.
How Corefy can help
Integrating a secure payment gateway is essential for your business's success. At Corefy, we take security extremely seriously, constantly updating our protection tools and adding new features. Here’s how we take care of our client's confidential data:
We administer and manage all our servers and do not outsource any administration to third parties for payment processing.
We use technologies from well-established and trustworthy service providers to prevent DDoS attacks on our servers and support our websites, applications, and APIs highly available and performing.
We perform rigorous automated vulnerability scans several times a week on both our Internet-facing and internal infrastructure to assess our attack surface area.
We perform ASV-certified security scans/audits, internal and external network scans, and other PCI compliance checks weekly.
All Internet-facing and internal infrastructure are aggressively patched in a tight time scale after patches for security vulnerabilities are made available by vendors.
Intrusion prevention system.
For security enhancement, all inbound and outbound traffic from our platform is monitored by an active intrusion prevention system (IPS) which blocks the threat of common exploits and zero day attacks.
TLS 1.2 (SSL).
Using Transport Layer Security Protocol (TLS) version 1.2 Corefy ensures the safety of payment details during the transfer, guaranteeing a secure connection between the server and the client’s browser.
Cardholder data is secured by using a combination of symmetric and asymmetric cryptographic algorithms. All details are managed using multiple encryption keys with split knowledge and dual control. Fraudsters would not be able to make use of information stolen from a database without also having the key.
We process payments online without touching card details. Instead, we use tokens to process transactions, so any intervention to your server will not harm cards.
No prohibited data storage.
We don't store raw magnetic stripes, validation codes, or PIN blocks.
As you can see, a secure payment gateway aims to protect customer transactions, the money in your merchant account and generally protect your business from fraudulent attacks by creating a safe environment for payment processing.
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