In episode 153, I chat with Chris Klosowski from Sandhills Development and Easy Digital Downloads. Our topic is the SCA, or Strong Customer Authentication. This is happening in the EU and, of course, affects online store owners beyond those borders.
We talk about:
- What exactly SCA is and what it means.
- How this affects store owners outside the EU.
- The benefits Chris finds with SCA vs. what we found with the GDPR.
- Why this is important for WordPress store owners and how it impacts them directly.
- Whether enough store owners are aware of it.
- What it took to make Easy Digital Downloads SCA-ready.
Chris’s Insights on SCA
What it is and what it means.
It’s really just a way to force us to use two-factor authentication for a lot of our logins. It’s a banking regulation to allow banks and payment processors to also use a form of two-factor. That’s the short version of it.
Even if you’re a US-based customer, I think this is something that you should be implementing, even if it is only required that for EU.
In the United States, we didn’t get the credit and debit cards with the little chips in them for quite a while. Europe had those for years before us and they’re far more secure than just using the swipe, the little magnetic strip. So I think this is personally one of these regulations that starts in the EU but may go worldwide because it protects consumers and their money.
The benefits for the store owner vs GDPR.
With GDPR you could read ten different articles that explained it ten different ways but at the end of the day it was mostly about protecting customer data: how you processed the payment with their email addresses, what data you stored and the tools that built it. The GDPR was very daunting. With SCA, it’s a little different because the payment gateways are giving us the tools to integrate and do it. Most of them are building it into their own platforms.
The direct effects with WordPress and Easy Digital Downloadse
We were finally forced to move over to use Stripe elements, which we had delayed mostly due to some technical debt we had, but it really forced our hand into moving into using stripes elements, with a Stripe-posted card fields, which are more secure than having form fields on your website. That’s the biggest change.
I think the other change is that you’re going to see updates to a lot of different WordPress plugins. The requirements to move to SCA, supported payments with Stripe specifically, requires a jump to PHP 5.6, which I know sounds old.
Educating and preparing.
Stripe was doing a lot of customer outreach and we worked directly with them. We were talking consistently and giving them progress updates from our side. What was interesting was I know companies that operate primarily in the United States that aren’t in the WordPress world. And I would mention what I’m working on and we’re working on getting all of our SCA work done. And they’d be like, what’s SCA?
Find Chris at:
Chris on Twitter @cklosowski
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