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Cyber Security in the Payment Card Industry

When payment card transactions occur, each unit along the line of transaction—the cardholder, the merchant, the merchant's bank, the cardholder's bank, and the network connecting the banks—needs to be secure to protect the valuable information. If a phisher or hacker were to break into any one of those nodes, then information gathered by the hacker could be used against the other merchants. While retaining information may speed up transactions, it renders that information more vulnerable to hijacking. Protecting that information requires the cooperation of actors up and down the line of the credit card transaction. In the United States, several pieces of legislation have been introduced to induce merchants to be more secure, but these regulations are unlikely to have a net positive effect, as merchants will probably begin preferring other forms of payment.
Richard A. Epstein and Thomas P. Brown
University of Chicago; O'Melveny and Myers
Industry Focus: 
Information & Telecommunication
Internet & Cyberspace
Legal & Financial
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