What Is a PCI QSA and Should You Hire One?

What exactly is a PCI certified QSA? Should I hire one for my business? Perhaps these are questions you have asked yourself. Knowing what exactly they do and if they are necessary can be a complicated affair.

However, if you are interested in learning more about PCI certified QSAs, you have come to the right place. We hope this will be a helpful and informative resource for you and will give you the information necessary to determine for yourself whether or not a PCI certified QSA is right for you.

What is a PCI certified QSA?

A PCI qualified security assessor (QSA) is an individual who handles compliance auditing and consulting in the payment card industry.

A PCI QSA assesses a business that deals with credit card data to ensure that they meet the necessary requirements of the PCI Standard. These security assessors must meet specific requirements in regard to education and training and be certified by the Payment Card Industry.

There are many benefits to hiring a QSA but there are also some downsides. Whether or not you should hire one for your own business will depend on the specific needs of your company. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of hiring a PCI certified QSA.

Pros of hiring a PCI certified QSA

PCI certified QSAs can provide many services to merchants including on-site data security assessments, gap analysis, remediation services, and PCI consulting and advice.

Hiring a PCI certified QSA is not a requirement for merchants, however, there are some pros to doing so. One such pro is the due diligence provided by third-party validation. Another pro is that you do not have to worry about taking the time for yourself to ensure that your company meets the requirements of the PCI data security standard.

Hiring a PCI certified QSA has many benefits, however, there are some cons as we will look at below.

Cons of hiring a PCI certified QSA

The only real significant disadvantage that we can see is the issue of cost. If you choose to hire a QSA over doing it yourself, you may end up spending a significant amount of money.

However, even with the high cost of hiring a QSA, you are not necessarily paying more. You may actually end up spending more in the long run by choosing to do it yourself.

If you choose to perform your own assessment, you have to factor in the cost of using internal resources and diverting attention away from other projects that would otherwise be sources of profit generation.

So, in reality, it may not actually cost you that much in the long run.


As you can see, there are pros and cons to hiring a PCI certified QSA. A merchant would do well to do their research and consider the cost and whether or not it would benefit them more in the long run to hire a qualified security assessor.

Though a QSA can be expensive, hiring one has a great potential of actually saving you money in the long run, as hiring a PCI certified QSA frees up your time having to dedicate resources to research and assessment.

We hope this has been an enlightening resource to you and has helped you get a better grasp on what it is that a PCI QSA does and given you an idea as to whether or not you should hire one for yourself.

At the end of the day, you will need to be looking out for the well-being of your company and only you can know for sure what that will look like.

We're the gold standard in payment processing

Providing our merchants with the latest tools to get the job done, from cutting edge payment solutions to award-winning technical support available 24/7/365. With Tidal Commerce you have a payments partner that will be there from your first dollar to your millionth.

circle We're available

Reach out today and find out how much you could be saving.