A Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) audit can be passed by complying with the bare minimum requirements, but that falls short of the purpose of it: to secure and protect cardholder data.
Meeting compliance is about passing an audit at a specific point in time and also maintaining it after the audit. The real challenge is sustaining continuous compliance to avoid costly breaches at the hands of motivated and skilled adversaries.
Indeed, as detailed in Verizon's "2017 Payment Security Report," nearly half (45%) of the companies examined between 2015 and 2016 were not fully PCI DSS compliant.
This paper explores the subject of continuous compliance versus audit-driven compliance, as well as how an ongoing approach to compliance makes compliance a positive force for securing data and systems.