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Vanta and Fintech Infrastructure introduce the Open Finance Data Security Standard (OFDSS)
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November 16, 2021

Vanta and Fintech Infrastructure introduce the Open Finance Data Security Standard (OFDSS)

Vanta is committed to the future of financial security. As the leader in continuous monitoring and automated security compliance software, we recently announced Vanta’s offering for PCI DSS compliance, which streamlines the complex, time-consuming work of completing a Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) or prepping for a Report on Compliance (ROC).

And today, we are building on this commitment by joining a consortium of financial technology and security compliance companies to announce the Open Finance Data Security Standard (OFDSS).

OFDSS founding supporters

OFDSS is a proposed framework of requirements that address security risks commonly encountered by emerging financial technology companies that handle sensitive information. Today, these companies must navigate through a labyrinth of security best practices, choose which ones to implement, and hope they are correct.

OFDSS will simplify this process by creating strong, auditable data security guidelines that maintain alignment with relevant criteria from other security frameworks, such as SSAE18 TSC for Security and NIST CSF, while providing clear requirements designed for cloud-native, technology-focused startups and growth-stage companies.

OFDSS will raise the bar for data security in the fintech ecosystem, while helping companies keep up with the rapid pace of innovation. Vanta is excited to partner with OFDSS because we believe that it will help fintechs improve their security, give banks reassurance about the companies connecting to their APIs, and, most importantly, protect consumers.

What does OFDSS cover?

The OFDSS is designed to be a living document that will evolve over time to meet the needs of the industry, incorporate new technology, and will mitigate emerging risks. Currently, it establishes 63 individual security requirements across 12 control domains that address common data security risks encountered by early-stage digital finance companies. The requirements are contextualized with implementation guides, along with high-level audit steps for ensuring compliance.

They are not intended to exhaustively address all data security risks that may be material to any particular organization. However, these requirements address security risks that are commonly encountered by emerging financial technology companies when processing or storing sensitive information. Companies with mature and audited information security programs that have the ability to provide reasonable assurance about the effectiveness of those programs are likely already meeting the requirements captured in this standard.

Companies who are subject to OFDSS can work with Vanta to help evaluate their practices against the criteria, help address challenges, and provide audit services.

Automated support for today’s - and tomorrow’s - compliance standards

The OFDSS shares a backbone of best practices with existing standards like PCI, SOC 2, or ISO 27001 and Vanta is proud to offer support for these leading standards utilized by fintech companies. Any company that meets the OFDSS standard will have a huge head start on implementing and proving compliance to nearly any security-focused standard.

Vanta distinguishes itself from other compliance platforms with continuous security monitoring services. Vanta runs hourly checks on your connected services to ensure they are set up securely, and that they remain secure over time, rather than point-in-time testing. Continuous monitoring searches for common security gaps, like unencrypted storage, open ports, or lack of MFA  – and then alerts your team of exceptions.

Vanta is eager to work alongside the OFDSS to create a more secure fintech ecosystem. Our longstanding commitment to continuous security monitoring and compliance will strengthen with this partnership as we continue to learn and share our security best practices and solutions.

OFDSS is an industry initiative and the consortium is seeking additional industry feedback and participation with plans to begin implementing the standard in the second half of 2022. To learn more and potentially get involved, please visit

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Determine Your PCI Compliance Level

If your organization processes, stores, or transmits cardholder data, you must comply with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), a global mandate created by major credit card companies. Compliance is mandatory for any business that accepts credit card payments.

When establishing strategies for implementing and maintaining PCI compliance, your organization needs to understand what constitutes a Merchant or Service Provider, and whether a Self Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) or Report on Compliance (ROC) is most applicable to your business.

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The PCI Security Standards Council has established the below criteria for Merchant and Service Provider validation. Use these descriptions to help determine the SAQ or ROC that best applies to your organization.

Good news! Vanta supports all of the following compliance levels:


A SAQ A is required for Merchants that do not require the physical presence of a credit card (like an eCommerce, mail, or telephone purchase). This means that the Merchant’s business has fully outsourced all cardholder data processing to PCI DSS compliant third party Service Providers, with no electronic storage, processing, or transmission of any cardholder data on the Merchant’s system or premises.

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A SAQ A-EP is similar to a SAQ A, but is a requirement for Merchants that don't receive cardholder data, but control how cardholder data is redirected to a PCI DSS validated third-party payment processor.

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for service providers

A SAQ D includes over 200 requirements and covers the entirety of PCI DSS compliance. If you are a Service Provider, a SAQ D is the only SAQ you’re eligible to complete.

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A Report on Compliance (ROC) is an annual assessment that determines your organization’s ability to protect cardholder data. If you’re a Merchant that processes over six million transactions annually or a Service Provider that processes more than 300,000 transactions annually, your organization is responsible for both a ROC and an Attestation of Compliance (AOC).

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Learn more about how Vanta can help. You can also find information on PCI compliance levels at the PCI Security Standards Council website or by contacting your payment processing partner.

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