PCI DSS Compliance Charge On My Merchant Statement?

Posted on Thursday, May 08, 2008 by Ray Trigony
Most merchants gave up trying to read their monthly credit card processing statements a long time ago because of how unbelievable complex most providers choose to make them.

For those merchants that occasionally look at them, they may be surprised to see a new 'PCI DSS Compliance' fee in the amount of $4 to $20 per month. This fee is a bit perplexing to me because of the merchant account provider, in all the cases I'm familiar with, is not actually providing any product or service to the merchant related to PCI DSS Compliance.

If a merchant gets breached, the Card Associations fine the acquirer and then the acquirer passes the fine down to the merchant. So while the Card Associations have put the responsibility on the processors to make sure that their merchants are compliant, the merchant is ultimately responsible for becoming compliant and paying the fines if breached. So (again let me ask) why again are merchant account providers charging businesses this fee?