5 Best Secure Merchant Services

5 Best Secure Merchant Services

Are you looking for secure merchant services that are PCI DSS certified or HIPAA enabled? These two standards of compliance are crucial for payment platforms. 

Fret not, since this list features the best merchant services for ensuring both PCI DSS certification and HIPAA compliance.

secure merchant services rectangle health

1. Rectangle Health

Specifically built for the healthcare industry, Rectangle Health helps patients pay their balances on a convenient PCI DSS and HIPAA-compliant payment platform. It works with electronic health records and practice management systems, making processing payments easier for your organization.

Top features:

  • Electronic signature
  • Integrates with Touch-to-pay cards, digital wallets, and mobile wallet apps
  • Card on File (CoF) feature, which lets patients indicate their preferred payment method in a secure vault
  • Integrates with AdvancedMD, Cerner, NetHealth, Meditouch, Greenway Health, Nextgen, and more
5 Best Secure Merchant Services

2. Square

Square is a PCI DSS-certified, HIPAA-enabled Point of Sale and payment processing platform. It accepts major credit cards like Visa, Mastercard, and American Express. With Square’s highly flexible platform, you have the option to select and choose the products to include in your POS system.

Top features:

  • Square Reader handheld device
  • Square Register or Terminal for printing receipts
  • Integrates with Apple Pay, Google Pay, Cash App Pay, and Tap to Pay
  • Allows you to sell, redeem, track, and reload physical gift cards
  • Customizable item grid
  • Offline mode
5 Best Secure Merchant Services

3. Stripe

Stripe is a PCI Service Provider Level 1 merchant solution. A third-party PCI-certified auditor checked its security features, including its Card Data Vault and integration code’s software development. However, Stripe does not sign a BAA with healthcare providers and should only be used for payment purposes.

Top features:

  • Multi-lingual support
  • API Access
  • One-click payment through Link
  • Share links over email, SMS, and other channels
  • Integrates with GoDaddy, Shopify, Zoho Invoice, Slack, Squarespace, and more
5 Best Secure Merchant Services

4. PayPal

Anyone looking for secure merchant solutions will have heard about PayPal. The popular payment platform has been around since 2000, specializing in online payment transactions. Like Stripe, Paypal is PCI DSS certified but does not sign BAAs with covered entities or business associates under HIPAA.

Top features:

  • Available in 203 global markets
  • Integrates with Shopify, Etsy, Chargebee, Xero, Zoho, Intuit Quickbooks, and more
  • Fraud and chargeback protection features for enterprises
  • POS system through the PayPal Zettle app on your mobile phone, card reader, or terminal
5 Best Secure Merchant Services

5. Vagaro

Vagaro is a PCI DSS and HIPAA-compliant service with multiple features, including online booking and payment. It’s a flexible platform for small and large merchants that lets your clients make interest-free installments over time. It also allows them to set recurring card charges for subscription-based memberships.

Top features:

  • Set deposit amount for booking services
  • Charge no-show and cancellation fees
  • Vagaro app for email and text marketing
  • Require deposits at booking
  • Customizable shipping options, including FedEx, USPS, UPS, and in-store pickup

Key Factors for Evaluating Secure Merchant Services

If your company processes payments through credit cards or online payment solutions, it should ensure that it uses secure merchant platforms. Choose a platform that is Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS)-certified.

If your organization handles protected health information (PHI), it should be HIPAA-enabled. Businesses that don’t handle PHI don’t need to comply with HIPAA.

Here’s a short explanation of the two standards of compliance:

PCI DSS certified

PCI DSS is a global standard of compliance that is mandatory for any business that handles payment card data. Developed by the Payment Card Industry Security Standard Council (PCI SSC) in collaboration with major credit card companies, it protects cardholder data from theft.

There are four levels of PCI compliance, determined by the volume of transactions and risk profile. The highest level is 1 for merchants processing over 6 million transactions annually across all channels. Merchants processing fewer than 20,000 e-commerce transactions should pass level 4 compliance.

HIPAA compliance

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) doesn’t recognize any official HIPAA certification. However, it does require that HIPAA-enabled platforms that handle PHI sign a Business Associate Agreement (HIPAA) with the covered entities and business associates that use them. 

If the payment platform only facilitates payment but does not handle PHI, then it is exempted from HIPAA compliance. Therefore, platforms like PayPal and Stripe, which are not HIPAA compliant, can transact payments for healthcare organizations as long as their services are limited to such. These secure payment processing services should not be used to create or store PHI as opposed to other practice management platforms offering additional functionalities, including online payments and patient invoicing.

Choose the Best Merchant Services

When choosing secure payment processing services, make it a priority that they meet compliance standards. Foremost is PCI DSS compliance, which ensures the platform’s compliance with the necessary security standards to keep sensitive credit and payment card information safe.

HIPAA compliance with a signed BAA is also necessary if the platform, aside from processing payments, collects and handles protected health information. If it integrates with EMR, EHR systems, or other services handling PHI, then it must comply with the regulations set forth by healthcare data protection laws like HIPAA.

Kent Cañas

Kent is a content strategist currently specializing in HIPAA-compliant online fax. Her expertise in this field allows her to provide valuable insights to clients seeking a secure and efficient online fax solution.

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