What is CVV CID? Definition, Explanation, 10 Facts

The CVV or the CID is a 3 digit number that is printed on the front side of your credit card. CVV stands for Card Verification Value and CID stands for Card Identification Number.

This number is used to ensure that the correct credit card is being used to pay for a purchase. Continue reading to learn all you need to know.

What is CVV CID?

The Card Verification Value CID (CVV CID) is a credit card security feature. It is made up of three or four numbers. The terms card verification value (CVV) and card identification (CID) are interchangeable.

What is CVV CID?

The terms “card verification code” and “card security code” are interchangeable. To avoid fraudulent usage, the CVV CID is used to verify that the cardholder is in possession of the actual card during certain types of transactions.

Alternative Names For Credit Card Security Codes

We must confront the elephant in the room before proceeding with this work, or else the reader will become confused. Because the various payment networks could not agree on a single term, CVVs may be known by numerous distinct names (go figure). When speaking with different people, you may hear any of the following terms, but they all signify the same thing:

  • Card Verification Value (CVV Or CVV2): Visa and Mastercard
  • Card Verification Code (CVC): This term refers to the CVV/CID code
  • Card Identification Number (CID): Discover and American Express

Where To Find Your CVV CID On Your Card

This numerical code may be found on the back of all Visa, Mastercard, and Discover cards in the lower right corner. In contrast, American Express chose to prominently display its CID on the card’s exterior.

Regardless of where it is situated, the code performs the same purpose: it verifies the cardholder’s authorisation to use the card for a specific transaction.

Here’s an useful table to help you study the facts quickly:

Issuer Name Location Number Of Digits
Visa CVV/CVV2 Back of card 3
Mastercard CVV/CVV2 Back of card 3
American Express CID Front of card 4
Discover CID Back of card 3

It’s vital to understand that this code isn’t transmitted during a card-present transaction like a swipe, dip, or tap.

What is CVV CID?

The CVV number offers an added degree of security, helping firms to deter fraud and reduce their risk exposure. The next sections will explain why this is crucial and what measures to do next.

CVV CID Codes Overview

CID/CVV codes were initially 11-character alphanumeric sequences that originated in the United Kingdom.

The proposal was later taken up by the UK Association for Payment Clearing Services, which standardized the code into the usual three-digit format. They began utilizing them in 1997 with MasterCard, 1999 with American Express, and 2001 with Visa.

These codes can perform a variety of purposes.

The major purpose of these codes is to prove to the store that you are the rightful owner of the card. This is especially important when making an online purchase because you cannot use a signature, PIN, or any other type of in-person verification.

Someone who was able to replicate your credit card’s magnetic stripe or obtain your credit card number in any other manner may attempt to make a fraudulent purchase using it.

This extra layer of security can deter fraudulent behavior if the thief is required to submit the security code but does not have access to your card.

There are several compelling reasons why this may work.

First and foremost, your CID will not be stored to your magnetic strip. This prohibits retailers from immediately acquiring your CID when you swipe your card, lowering credit card fraud.

No shop can retain a record of your CID when you make an online transaction. (This is why CIDs are sometimes required when inputting a credit card number for automated billing.)

Because merchants are unable to keep your security code, it is protected from theft in the event of a data breach.

You may increase the security of your account by using these digits.

However, because of the prevalence of phishing operations, many fraudsters have been able to get CIDs, making them less effective in preventing fraud than they were previously.

Because not all stores require them, and some thieves may readily guess the three or four character code, these security numbers have drawbacks.

A Major Concern With Credit Card Fraud

Credit card fraud is a major problem since it is so simple to get card information and use it to make illegal purchases over the phone or online.

What is CVV CID?

To retrieve the CVV CID, you must ask someone who physically possesses the card to transfer the code to you. However, fraudsters may also attempt to obtain the security codes for the cards that they intend to use.

When this code is required, there is an added level of safety for financial transactions since it adds an extra step for fraudsters to complete.

What To Do When There Is No CVV CID On a Card?

If a card does not have a CVV CID, the verification number field can be left blank or replaced with the digits 000 or 999.

Internet shopping carts, for example, may be configured to dynamically update this area based on the kind of card used, increasing the number of spaces from three to four for various cards or blanking it out altogether if the client is using a card that does not have a CVV code.

Companies that seek this code will often give guidance on what consumers should do if they are using cards that do not have a CVV code.

Advice For People

Users should create replicas of both sides of their credit cards in case one is stolen or misplaced. If there is any cause to assume that the accounts of its clients have been hacked, credit card firms must be alerted immediately.

Why Do You Need A CVV CID Code?

As previously stated, a credit card security code is a vital tool for authenticating the identity of a consumer making a transaction over the phone or through an online retailer. However, it isn’t the only occasion a CVV/CVV2 number will come in handy during a financial transaction.

The major card brands began requiring merchants to submit this code in card-not-present transactions in 2018. What was their driving force?

There has been an increase in internet fraud. According to LexisNexis’ 2018 True Cost Of Fraud research, fraud expenses are rising. In 2017, every dollar ($1) lost to fraud cost a corporation $2.77.

In 2018, however, that amount increased to an average of $2.94. As unfortunate as it may be, the cost is significantly higher in the digital domain.

Another big issue that a CVC code may help firms with is chargebacks. A chargeback happens when a customer requests a return of their money (often due to an unauthorized transaction). There is no one reason for a chargeback.

A CVV code isn’t perfect, but it does prove that the customer agreed to charge their card for the purchase because they had to physically enter the number.

By requiring a credit card verification number, you may avoid “friendly fraud,” in which a customer fraudulently claims they did not make a purchase from your company although knowing they did.

Different Types Of Security Codes

In case you weren’t aware, the security numbers on your credit card have multiple different names.

These are some of the most frequent security codes you may encounter:

What is CVV CID?

  • The CVV (Card Validation Value) is a one-of-a-kind identifier for each card CSC (card security code)
  • CAV (card authentication value)
  • CVD (card verification data)
  • CID (card identification number)
  • CVC1 or CVC2? (card verification code)
  • CVV2 (card verification value code, 2nd generation)

Some payment networks choose to use special names. American Express, for example, refers to the four-digit number as the CID, and Discover may do the same.

Other payment networks, on the other hand, may use a variety of names. MasterCard, for example, will refer to it as the CVC, whereas Visa may refer to it as the CVV.

Keep in mind that if a security code is referenced in conjunction with a purchase, the four numbers printed on the front of your American Express card are asked.

How To Use & Safeguard Credit Card Security Codes

This page was created to answer any problems that could emerge while determining the worth of a CVV (or CVV2, CVC, or CID) number for a small business. The case has been made for requiring the CVV code in any card-not-present transaction, but if you don’t need it, don’t worry about it.

Because most payment processors now require all merchants to collect the credit card CVV code upon online or manual card input, you will need to choose a payment processing business that is up to date on the most recent rules.

Remember that in order to stay PCI compliant, firms must never record the CVV number of a customer’s card. It is not suggested that stores retain the CVV code, even for card-on-file purchases, as doing so may subject them to responsibility in the case of a data breach.

When it came to presenting you to important tools for maintaining a secure payment environment, we didn’t stop with only the CVV.

When launching an online business, it is critical to select a payment processor that specializes in online transactions and offers credit card security features such as AVS checks and 3D Secure technology.

Visit our Merchant Account Comparisons page to learn more about the differences in the services we provide.

Finally, if you’re a customer reading this and want to avoid entering the CVV every time you make an online purchase, you have two options: use a digital wallet or Click-to-Pay.

The digital wallet generates a token reflecting the user’s credit card information and sends it to the receiving party during an electronic transaction.

The buyer is not needed to provide a CVV. When it comes to Click-to-Pay, be aware that it is a new service provided by the major credit card companies that allows users to pay faster by eliminating the need to manually enter the CVV.

What You Need To Know To Accept Payment

To summarize, a CVV check is only required for “card-not-present” transactions (those in which the card is not physically swiped, dipped, or touched). Even if your customer is there, you will need to get the CVC if you manually enter the credit card data into your virtual terminal, POS system, or mobile POS app.

What is CVV CID?

Customers will enter the CVV number from their credit cards whenever they make a purchase or pay an invoice through your website. More information on taking payments without physically present cardholders may be found in the Full Guide to Handling Card-Not-Present Transactions.

It is critical to clarify that CVV codes are not necessary for in-person transactions made using a card reader or terminal, and that consumers should not give away their codes unless expressly requested for them.

When processing without the card’s EMV chip or magnetic stripe, the code is the only means to validate the card’s legitimacy. Let’s look at the two most typical scenarios in which you’d need the added security of a CVV/CVV2 number.

Entering CVV Numbers For Manually-Entered Tracsactions

If you employ a PCI-compliant payment processing provider, the CVV number field should already be present on your payment form for manual entry. That’s because, as previously said, payment processing companies require it for any online credit card transaction.

Because all current processors are aware of the instances in which it is suitable, you or your customer will be asked to provide the CVV code whenever it is required. Most retailers do not require the CID, CVV1, or CVV2 number when swiping, dipping, or tapping the card.

Here’s a screenshot of a Square virtual terminal with the CVV field highlighted. The screen you see is the one utilized by the storefront firm when a consumer inputs their credit card information manually.

It bears reiterating that CVV and CVV2 are interchangeable; Square is simply being careful by using two acronyms.

Store in mind that no reputable business should ever record or keep a copy of your credit card’s CVV number. Having this number on file is really against PCI-DSS (Payment Card Industry-Data Security Standard) guidelines.

The capture of a CVC at the moment of purchase and subsequent deletion is not a foolproof security solution, but it does provide an extra layer of protection for shops during online and telephone transactions where the customer’s actual presence cannot be verified.

CVC Code Entry For Ecommerce

For those of you who have an online storefront, the main payment processing firms also require a credit card security number. Because this sort of transaction is known as a “card-not-present” transaction, you should be aware of the possible risks connected with any online purchase.

Because fraudsters commonly prey on small businesses in search of security flaws, having a PCI-compliant processor and payment gateway is critical.

A Credit Card Security Code Is Just Part Of A Good Anti-Fraud Strategy For Merchants

A merchant can avoid fraud in ways other than verifying CVV codes. Using AVS and combining it with additional anti-fraud services (such as 3D Secure) might be very beneficial.

If your business takes payments online, AVS is a feature worth investigating (Address Verification System). Throughout the checkout process, the processor validates your clients’ billing and delivery addresses.

There may or may not be an extra cost depending on the processing service you select. The option is already included in most processors’ flat or tiered pricing structures. AVS may be more expensive, but it is worth it to eliminate the aggravation of probable fraud.

Consider that the risk associated with AVS-processed transactions is likely to be minimized, thereby leading to cost savings. To understand more about AVS, see How to Use an AVS Check to Deter eCommerce Fraud and Protect Your Business.

What is CVV CID?

Third-party authentication should be included in internet security measures (3D-Secure). Card issuers now provide 3D Secure technology as an additional layer of protection at the checkout.

Once this is completed, business owners have completed their part of the process; however, the specifics may differ depending on the card network and issuing bank.

Inquire with your merchant account provider if 3D secure payments are available, and if not, how to install them. For additional information, see our post What Are Verified By Visa and 3D Secure?


Card verification value (CVV) or CID code is an important code that is found on the back of credit and debit cards. It is used as a security feature to prevent fraud. Most consumers don’t know this, but it’s also how they pay for things online.

CVV CID or Card Verification Value (CID) is a code on your credit card. It’s the 3 digit number on the back of the card. The CVV is different than the CVV2 code which can be found on your debit card. This is used for fraud protection purposes and is not part of your credit score.

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