SOURCE: Four51

May 13, 2008 12:38 ET

Four51 e-Commerce Platform Achieves Level 1 PCI Compliance to Protect the Security of All Credit Card Transactions on Its Network

Online Sellers of Print Materials, Promotional Products, and Office Supplies Pass on Benefits of Secure Commerce to Their Customers

MINNEAPOLIS, MN--(Marketwire - May 13, 2008) - The threat of online fraud and identity theft poses a constant risk to e-commerce, but merchants and technology providers are taking steps to eliminate such concerns. Four51, an open e-commerce platform that connects buyers, distributors and suppliers of indirect goods such as printed materials, promotional products and office supplies, is now independently certified as a Level 1 Payment Card Industry compliant service provider. The PCI Data Security Standard is managed by the Cardholder Information Security Program, which was developed to protect credit card data across all points of a transaction, ensuring that cardholders, merchants and service providers maintain the highest information security standards.

The impact of online fraud reached another all-time high in 2007, as a report released last Friday by the FBI's Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) says U.S. citizens reported $239 million in Internet-based fraud last year. The report states, "Credit/debit card fraud is an example that ranks among the most commonly reported offenses to IC3."

For suppliers and distributors using the Web-to-print feature of Four51's broad supply chain management network, Four51's Level 1 PCI compliance means buyers concerned about debit or credit card security can now rely on third-party verification of the security of the transactions conducted on the Four51 network. The security of Four51 serves as a strong selling point for manufacturers and distributors of indirect goods who are increasingly seeing their orders shift to online storefronts.

"Protecting this critical information on a secure platform is essential to Four51 and all its customers," stated Olivia Rose, a security consultant and Qualified Security Assessor at Solutionary, the independent security service provider that performed Four51's PCI compliance verification. "The serious approach they have taken to a complex issue was evident to Solutionary's PCI audit team, and they are to be applauded."

PCI compliant credit card processing service providers, including the Four51 e-commerce platform, are required to adhere to a standard set of 12 security practices, such as:

--  install and maintain a firewall configuration to protect data
--  protect stored data
--  encrypt transmission of cardholder data and sensitive information
    across public networks
--  restrict access to data by business need-to-know
--  assign a unique ID to each person with computer access
--  track and monitor all access to network resources and cardholder data
    

"Being PCI compliant and providing a safe, secure e-commerce environment for our users and their customers isn't a switch we can flip, something we can just turn on," said Mark Johnson, CEO of Four51. "It's an ongoing process full of regular security scans, annual compliance audits and continually responding to new threats, challenges and obstacles on the Web. Giving our customers a secure place to do business is hard work, but it's the most important thing we can do."

About Four51

Four51 (www.four51.com) is an open e-commerce platform that connects buyers, distributors and suppliers of indirect goods, such as printed materials, promotional products, and office supplies.

Four51's unique approach to the indirect goods market is centered on Connect Four51, a Supply Chain Management program that removes inefficiencies from order processing, manufacturing, and go-to-market activities and delivers the resulting financial benefits directly to the buyer. Connect Four51 suppliers gain instant, seamless access to hundreds of print distributors and hundreds of thousands of print buyers through a single online platform. Additionally, many distributors are selecting Four51's no-cost option for integrated business management functionality using SAP Business One. Ennis, Inc., a leading wholesale manufacturer of a complete line of printed business products that employs over 6,000 people in 44 facilities throughout the United States, joined Connect Four51 in February 2008.

Four51 is growing virally at the rate of 1,200 buyers per day, and there are more than 25,000 businesses and 730,000 registered users conducting commerce on the Four51 network. Founded in 1999, Four51 is headquartered in Minneapolis, MN, and is recognized as a leader in supply chain efficiency in its industry.

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