PCI DSS 4.0 compliance required by March 2025


The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) 4.0 has been released, but many organizations are still trying to figure out what it means for them. The PCI 4.0 changes have implications for merchants, service providers, their customers, and other parties that process payment card transactions. Organizations should start preparing to comply with this new standard by March 2025 or sooner.


PCI DSS 4.0 compliance is a big deal. It’s not just another new version of the standard to learn but an update that presents you with new challenges and requirements that must be satisfied if your organization wants to keep its cards in customers’ wallets and still be able to take payments online.

What does PCI DSS 4.0 mean for your organization?

In short, it means more than ever before that you need a comprehensive understanding of what PCI DSS is, how it works and why it exists—and then put those concepts into practice by developing or improving your own processes for handling payment card data, so they’re compliant with the latest standards.

PCI DSS 4.0 changes and implications

  • PCI DSS 4.0 is a major change from the previous version of the standard, 3.2.1, released in 2018.
  • You can expect to see these changes reflected in a contract you sign with your credit card processor or other service providers that handle cardholder data by March 2025. This means that even if you’re not currently processing payments through one of these service providers, you should familiarize yourself now with what’s going on so that when it does become necessary for you to do so later down the road—and it will—you have time to prepare your organization for compliance with PCI 4 requirements before they become mandatory contracts.

What should your organization do to prepare for PCI 4.0 compliance

To get the most out of your investment in PCI DSS 4.0 compliance, it’s important to take a few steps.

  • Get a clear understanding of PCI 4.0

To prepare for PCI 4.0 compliance, you need to understand the details and requirements of the new standard. Look at what your organization needs to do differently within the scope of each requirement and consider how this will affect your security program as a whole. You’ll also want to look at how these changes will impact other parts of your business—particularly those related but outside the scope of payment card security (e.g., directory services).

  • Identify your risk profile

Understanding where you stand in terms of risk concerning meeting each requirement will help you prioritize where resources should be allocated for your organization’s efforts toward PCI 4.0 compliance efforts not only meet but exceed expectations from regulators or third-party assessors such as Qualys Secure Cloud Platform (SCAP).

The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) 4.0 has been released; it’s a good idea to start preparing for it now if you still need to. The new standard will impact your organization, regardless of whether you must comply with it.

PCI DSS 4.0 compliance requirements will be enforced starting March 2025, but it’s best to prepare for the transition now. The new standard is a contractual requirement for all organizations that store, process, or transmit cardholder data and will impact your organization regardless of whether you are required to comply with it or not.

There are several key changes in PCI DSS 4.0:

  • It requires additional data protection controls around networking and remote access
  • It introduces a new methodology called Threat Modeling Prevention (TMP)
  • It focuses on preventing cyberattacks by identifying the most critical areas of the business (such as payment processing) and applying security controls at each step along this path


We hope this blog post has helped you understand the implications of PCI 4.0 and the changes it brings to your organization. While compliance is not mandatory until March 2025, it’s a good idea to start preparing now if you haven’t already done so.

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