In today’s dynamic environment, security, privacy and accountability are key to the modern call center equation. This is demonstrated through the rise of regulations such as PCI, DSS, and HIPAA compliance standards. These factors have taken on a new level of urgency as cybercriminal activity becomes a greater threat to e-commerce operations.
This means understanding exactly what regulatory bodies demand in their frameworks, as well as what it takes for you to fulfill these requirements from technological and operational perspectives. To help get you on the right track toward complete call center compliance, here are four valuable tips that apply to in-house or outsourced operations:
“PCI DSS and HIPAA standards have taken on a new level of urgency as cybercriminal activity becomes a greater threat to e-commerce.”
- Treat conversations as critical data: Live interactions generate important value from the call center, and even non-critical customer checkpoint must be facilitated in a compliant manner if you want to promote the highest possible standard of privacy and security. This doesn’t mean just implementing a firewall at the perimeter of your network or equipping employees with password protection – PCI DSS demands that all traffic is thoroughly assessed with continuous monitoring and tracking. It can be invaluable to this process to record and organize key data points in a centralized CRM or Case Management system.
- Maximize workflow efficiency: Compliance can be assisted by streamlining your customer journey with fewer moving parts to your processes. By consolidating your call center workflows and minimizing the number of interactive checkpoints necessary for resolution, the more control you’ll have over the information generated and shared during the customer service process. This will allow you to gain a much stronger grip on your compliance checklist while creating a better user experience for agents and consumers alike.”PCI compliance is about more than just securing your systems and encrypting your data,” according to Simon Beeching of Syntec, quoted in Call Center Helper. “In many ways, those are the easy parts. Where those systems and data come into contact with humans is the weak point. In a complex operational environment, where hundreds of people might be coming and going every day, proper security procedures are absolutely essential.”
- Implement privacy-boosting tech: Upholding strong procedural standards depends largely on your operational and workforce management strategies. There are a handful of technologies proven to shore up the day-to-day protections that can keep your call centerfully compliant. Encryption should form the foundation of your efforts, according to TMCNet, which recommends that data transmitted over phone lines, across Web connections and throughout networks within the contact centeritself be protected via this method. Live chat, email and other data-centric formats should also be protected.
- Stay ahead of regulatory developments: Compliance standards are constantly in flux, and with so many digital threats cropping up across the business world, organizations such as PCI are expanding their frameworks to account for these new dangers. In fact, PCI DSS 3.0, an update which includes nearly 100 adjustments and additions, was instated at the turn of the new year and looks to be implemented throughout the industry in the near future, according to TechTarget. To ensure your call center remains compliant in light of these changes, you’ll need to keep pace with the evolution of these regulations and refine your operations accordingly.
Compliance with PCI DSS 3.0, as it progresses to full industry implemention, is especially important if you employ call center outsourcing services, as the organization emphasized its standards across third-party providers in their new documentation. Make sure your call center partner is an ally in your compliance efforts and you’ll be much better prepared for any further developments that are sure to come forth this year.