Security management and compliance specialist, RandomStorm, has announced MicroStorm: a new plug and play appliance that provides intrusion prevention, intrusion detection, network monitoring and reporting. The appliance has been designed to help merchants to maintain compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) in between scheduled audits.

PCI DSS is a set of internationally recognised guidelines for any company that processes, stores, or transmits customers payment card details. The Standard was devised by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council, formed by Mastercard, Visa, American Express, JCB and Discover Financial Services. Version 2.0 of the Standard came into force on 1st January 2011 and lists the security best practice that merchants must follow to prevent card fraud and retain their ability to process card payments.

Microstorm helps merchant companies to comply with the core requirements of PCI DSS, including: developing and maintaining secure systems and applications; tracking and monitoring all access to network resources and card holder data; and regularly testing security systems and processes. By combining network and wireless intrusion detection, log management, vulnerability scanning and reporting tools into a single plug and play appliance, RandomStorm aims to speed deployment and reduce the total cost of ownership for merchants.

Recent media reports have highlighted the dangers posed to card holder data by hackers and malware that remains hidden on business networks and siphons off information over an extended period. Companies of all sizes are now looking for ways to detect network intrusions and protect customers personal and financial information. Commenting on the new network scanning and reporting appliance, Robin Hill, co-founder of RandomStorm said, "We already provide xStorm, an enterprise security scanning and compliance system. We recognised that SMEs and retail stores need an integrated solution that is easy to deploy and reduces their total cost of ownership."

"Microstorm is delivered on a single small form factor appliance that is designed to help merchants monitor and prove their compliance on an ongoing basis, with the reassurance that if anything breaches their network they will be immediately alerted."

RandomStorm provides vulnerability scanning and intrusion detection services to help companies to improve their security posture. The company is a CESG CHECK security consultancy and certified as a Qualified Security Assessor by the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council.

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