Cognia Debuts Cloud-based PCI Compliance Solution for Contact Centers

Cognia, a provider of cloud-based communications intelligence solutions, has launched Cognia Live, the first PCI-DSS compliant, QSA-validated solution to be delivered from global cloud architecture.

With Cognia Live’s dual-tone-multi-frequency (DTMF) suppression capabilities, sensitive card data is automatically prevented from reaching the agent or entering contact center systems while maintaining continuous customer interaction.

Sixty-nine percent of U.S. contact centers carry out card payments over the phone and 84 percent record calls, according to the company. Moreover, with the average cost of a data breach at $136 per record, and the cost of non-compliance with PCI being on average, more than 2.5 times greater than compliance, brands and call centers are more focused than ever on becoming PCI compliant.

However, PCI DSS states that Sensitive Authentication Data (SAD), such as the 3-digit verification codes on the back of cards, should not be stored in any format, encrypted or not, including digital audio recording. This poses a significant challenge to merchants and payment processors who are required to record calls in order to comply with other regulatory bodies, or for their own business development needs.

Cognia Live uses dial tone masking instead of voice to input sensitive payment card data. Because these push-button dialing tones are distinct and standard across landline, mobile and Internet calling devices, Cognia Live’s DTMF automatically identifies and masks these tones so that the agent cannot hear them and they never enter the call recording system.  With DTMF suppression, the conversation between the agent and customer continues without disruption, while keeping call recording simple and PCI compliant.

Cognia Live is powered by the Cognia Cloud, the first cloud-based service provider in the world to achieve QSA-validated (Level 1) PCI DSS compliance for a global cloud telephony and payment service platform. The system does not require on-premise equipment or software, and deploys across sites in any location. Cognia Live’s global cloud platform also ensures that contact centers can cleanse archived recording data or move it to a cloud-based storage model at a far lower cost than traditional PCI compliance or recording storage solutions.

“With recent events like Target’s and Home Depot’s massive data breaches, coupled with regulations like the Dodd Frank Act and the looming EMV deadline in the U.S., merchants are experiencing pressure from all corners to make their payment processing systems more secure,” said Frank Ortiz, head of global sales and senior vice president, Cognia. “Add to that the increasing number of remote contact center agents that aren’t within a merchant’s environment and PCI compliance can seem more challenging than ever.

“Our cloud-based dial-tone masking solution means that contact center recordings are never physically stored within brands’ infrastructure, minimizing our customers’ equipment costs, staff time spent installing, configuring and maintaining systems, and most importantly, compliance burden.”