PCI stands for Payment Card Industry and DSS stands for Data Security Standards. The combined acronym is referred to as PCI DSS. As a response to increased theft of credit card information, the different card brands (MasterCard, Visa, American Express and others) developed a minimum set of requirements for their merchants to follow.
To assist organisations in meeting those requirements, the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council (PCI SSC) was formed to manage and administer the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) and the supporting standards.
All entities, including local government, that accept, process, transmit or store cardholder data are required to comply with PCI DSS standards or risk restrictions, fines or exclusion from card acceptance programs.