Shostack + Friends Blog


A PCI Threat Model

Compliance isn't Security, oh and something I wrote.

The reason I hate compliance programs is because they're lists of things we need to do, and many times, those things don't seem to make a great deal of sense. In threat modeling, I talk about the interplay between threats, controls, and requirements, and I joke that "a requirement to have a control absent any threat" is why we hate compliance programs (not joking).

So when Anton Chuvakin wrote an article on Data Security and Threat Models and closed it with "explicit threat models do make security better," I remembered that I'd actually written up a threat model for PCI, but not shared it. It's now at A PCI Threat Model, and I have a column in Dark Reading explaining how this can solve the problem with security standards.