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I'm really disappointed in SAQ A-EP. I feel that as a web developer, there are just way too many questions that go over my head and I couldn't possibly know.

I use primarily Stripe and Braintree in my e-commerce solutions. So, there's this article of interest:

https://support.stripe.com/questions/what-about-pci-dss-3-0

They claim they're fully compliant under SAQ A. Stripe.js works by taking credit card data and passing it (via Javascript) directly to Stripe's servers, where the data is tokenized, and passed back to the merchant. Stripe says this makes a merchant eligible for SAQ A, however, SAQ A states:

The entirety of all payment pages delivered to the consumer's browser originates directly from a third-party PCI DSS validated service provider(s).

Furthermore this article states:

SAQ A:

Merchant website provides an iframe or URL that redirects a consumer to a PCI-compliant, third-party payment processor, where no elements of the page originate from the merchant website.

SAQ A-EP:

Merchant website provides an iframe or URL that redirects a consumer to a PCI-compliant, third-party payment processor, BUT some elements of the payment page originate from the merchant website. (Elements would be JavaScript, CSS or any functionality that supports how the payment page is created.)

To me, it sounds like Stripe still puts people under SAQ A-EP. Or PCI is very unclear, because both SAQ A and SAQ A-EP say that an iframe is acceptable.

But regardless of that, Stripe.js does not use iframes at all, so it seems to me it doesn't make one eligible for SAQ A.

Thoughts?

EDIT:

My mistake. After looking deeper into the Stripe.js code, I can see it's dynamically creating an iframe. I'm not sure what it's doing with it, but I'm sure they're performing some sequence of steps to be SAQ A compliant.

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The page you linked to above says:

The new version of Stripe.js meets these criteria by performing all transmission of sensitive cardholder data within an iframe served off of a stripe.com domain controlled by Stripe.

So Stripe does use iframes to make their customers eligible for SAQ A rather than SAQ A-EP, as long as you use the new version of stripe.js.

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  • AH! After some digging, I realized the Stripe.js code is dynamically adding an iframe and doing something with that. But by looking at the code examples, you never see the iframe. My mistake. – CaptSaltyJack Feb 11 '15 at 6:58
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    There's a good image on PCI Guru which shows when to use SAQ A as opposed to SAQ A-EP : pciguru.wordpress.com/2015/01/07/… – AndyMac Feb 11 '15 at 13:34

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