PCI DSS Level 1: a must for nonprofit cybersecurity

Jun 27, 2024
Expert-reviewed: Ivan Yarikov
Compliance Project Manager

Securely handling donation transactional data is crucial for maintaining donor trust and safeguarding financial information. One key way to ensure the security of credit card transactions is through PCI DSS Level 1 compliance. This certification is fundamental and a must-have for all technology providers that assist nonprofits with online donations.

Fundraise Up is compliant: explore our security certifications.

Let’s talk about PCI DSS Level 1 compliance, its benefits, and why it’s a crucial certification for nonprofits to consider when evaluating software partners.

What is PCI DSS Level 1 compliance?

PCI DSS, or Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, is a set of technical and operational standards designed to secure credit card transactions and protect cardholder data. Level 1 compliance is the highest level required for organizations processing over 6 million card transactions annually.

The benefits of PCI DSS Level 1 compliance for nonprofit cybersecurity

Top-level financial security

PCI Level 1 certification ensures that your donors' credit card data is protected with the highest level of security, minimizing the risk of data breaches and fraud. This is crucial for nonprofits handling significant amounts of donation data.

Building donor and partner trust

Using PCI Level 1 compliant software demonstrates your commitment to safeguarding financial information, which builds trust and confidence with your donors and partners. This is critical in maintaining and growing a nonprofit's support base.

Continuous security assurance

PCI Level 1 certification involves an ongoing process with annual audits. This continuous oversight provides nonprofits with the assurance that their platform’s security controls are effective and up-to-date, helping to promptly identify and mitigate any potential security threats.

Key aspects to consider

  • Ensure your software is PCI Level 1 compliant, as levels 2 and 3 are easier to achieve and don’t offer the same level of security.
  • Check that the payment processors used by your software partners are also PCI compliant to securely handle your donors' transactional data.
For example, at Fundraise Up, we help nonprofits increase donation revenue by providing digital tools like Checkout, website Elements, and more to enhance the donor journey and maximize conversions. While we are not a payment processor, we partner with PCI-compliant platforms like Stripe, PayPal, and Gemini. Learn more about the payment methods Fundraise Up provides to your supporters.

Partner with PCI DSS Level 1 certified software

At Fundraise Up, we take the security of your fundraising seriously, especially when it comes to transactional data. That’s why we maintain the highest PCI Level 1 compliance certificate, ensuring your donation and supporter data is secure.

In addition to PCI Level 1 compliance, we also hold SOC 2 Type II and ISO 27001 certifications, demonstrating our comprehensive commitment to superior data protection.

Moreover, we protect your nonprofit from fraudulent activities by implementing anti-fraud measures. We use advanced machine learning algorithms and human oversight to detect and prevent fraud effectively.

See all compliance certs
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