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The cardholder information security program (CISP) is a standard used by credit card companies in order to protect cardholder information during transactions and processing on the internet, over the phone or at the point of sale, and includes standards on how this sensitive data should be stored by merchants.
CISP was developed by Visa USA and has been mandated since 2001.
The cardholder information security program is intended to ensure that Visa cardholder data is protected wherever it resides. It ensures that members, merchants, and service providers utilizing the Visa brand maintain the highest security standards in protecting cardholder information to prevent financial loss.
In 2004 CISP requirements became integrated into the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS), which was a joint venture by Visa and MasterCard, in order to have a common industry standard for credit card security requirements. On September 7, 2006, ownership, maintenance, and distribution of PCI DSS was transferred to the PCI Security Standards Council (SSC).