When is It Safe to Give out the Security Code on the Back of my Credit Card?

The security code on the back of the credit card is very important. But if you don’t know the right time to give it out, it may be dangerous. You need to be careful. So we have prepared a post for you to help you understand when it is safe to give out the code.

When is It Safe to Give out the Security Code on the Back of my Credit Card?

The three or four-digit security code on the back of your credit card, which earlier credit cards may not have, is used to authenticate that you own the card. It is also known as a CVV or CV2 code.

There are several concerns regarding when it is safe to disclose this security code and when it is not. It is often safe to reveal this code while purchasing online, particularly with reputable merchants, but it should never be revealed when using the card in person.

Understanding the Security Code on the Back of my Credit Card

Generally, the security code was designed to provide more protection while purchasing things online. It is used to verify that you are authorized to use the card and that you possess all the card’s information.

When is It Safe to Give out the Security Code on the Back of my Credit Card?

Since an online transaction does not reveal your card to the merchant, the number prevents the merchant from making a fraudulent sale to someone using the primary number and expiration date, which may have been taken off the front of the card.

This is why you should never divulge the security code during a sales transaction in which you are present. It is not displayed when the card is scanned or when a duplicate of the card is stamped on a receipt.

People who steal this information, including some point-of-sale employees, lack the information required to conduct the vast majority of Internet purchases.

Obviously, not all online businesses need your CVV, so it may be prudent to only purchase with merchants who demand it in order to help those businesses seeking to prevent fraudulent use of your credit card.

Even with firewalls, security measures, and everything else in place, you cannot be certain that disclosing your security code over the Internet will ensure your safety. There is always a risk of identity theft if you provide all the information required to complete an Internet transaction.

Because of this, you must see the security code as only one of several methods to avoid Internet fraud. In addition to paying close attention to the transactions made to your credit card, it is essential that you do not disclose your credit card information to unfamiliar businesses.

When you are prompted for a security code, you might be more confident in larger, more trustworthy merchants. You should probably avoid providing this information to suppliers you have never heard of and whose websites do not appear to receive a great deal of traffic.

When purchasing items over the phone, you may also be asked for your security code number; however, you should not divulge this information if you are in a public place.

It is obvious, however, that a merchant will not request your CVV if you make a purchase in person. Typically, he or she will compare the signatures on the back of the card and the receipt to determine whether you are authorized to use it.

How Can You Find Your Card’s Security Code?

The majority of card networks, such as Visa, Mastercard, and Discover, issue each card a three-digit security number. On the back of your credit card, to the right of the signature line, you will likely find the security code.

The face of American Express cards have four-digit security codes.

Should You Share Your Security Code?

Keep your credit card security code under wraps unless you are sure a legitimate business needs it – and only if you initiate a transaction. Never reveal the code to anyone who calls or emails you out of the blue and requests the information.

If you’re nervous about giving the code over the phone, say, when you order takeout, you could wait until you pick up your food to pay for it, says Robert Livingstone, president of Ideal Cost, which negotiates credit card processing fees.

Essentially, it’s up to you to be careful about sharing credit card information. Just because it’s called a “security code” doesn’t mean you are truly protected from online fraud.

Being cautious means doing what you should already be doing to protect yourself from credit card fraud. “Ultimately, the cardholder needs to pay attention to their statements, reconciling them weekly online or monthly, and refute unauthorized charges ASAP,” says Robert Siciliano, cybersecurity expert with investment group ETFMG and CEO of Safr.Me, a security education resource.

Make sure you confirm the charges on your card statement, and contact any company you don’t recognize. If you spot fraudulent charges, report them to your credit card issuer right away, and ask for a new card.

When is It Safe to Give out the Security Code on the Back of my Credit Card?

Livingstone also suggests using a credit or charge card instead of a debit card if you are worried about security. You’ll have a much easier time disputing fraudulent charges on your credit card than on your debit card.

The bottom line? Your credit card security codes may give you a false sense of security. What matters is diligently tracking all activity on your credit card and reporting any suspicious charges to your issuer as soon as you spot them.

Can Someone Use Your Credit Card Without the Security Code?

Keep your credit card security code secret unless you are certain that a reputable firm requires it, and only if you begin a transaction. Never divulge the code to anybody who calls or emails you out of the blue requesting it.

Robert Livingstone, president of Ideal Cost, a company that negotiates credit card processing rates, suggests waiting to pay for your food until you pick it up if you’re apprehensive about providing the code over the phone, such as when ordering takeout.

Sharing credit card information responsibly is ultimately your responsibility. Just because it’s termed a “security code” doesn’t mean you’re safe from online fraud.

Being careful involves taking the precautions against credit card fraud that you should already be doing. Robert Siciliano, CEO of the security education site Safr.Me and a cybersecurity specialist at the investing firm ETFMG, advises cardholders to pay close attention to their bills, reconcile them weekly or monthly online, and dispute any fraudulent payments immediately.

Ensure that you validate the transactions on your credit card statement, and call any company that you do not recognize. Immediately report any fraudulent charges to your credit card company, and get a replacement card.

If security is a concern, Livingstone advocates using a credit or charge card instead of a debit card. It will be considerably easier to dispute fraudulent charges on a credit card than on a debit card.

What is the upshot? Credit card security codes may provide a false impression of security. What counts is monitoring your credit card activity attentively and immediately reporting any questionable charges to your card provider.

Common Credit Card Security Features

Nearly all credit cards come with security features.

  • The basics: All credit cards used by American consumers have a signature panel, an expiration date, a magnetic stripe, and a unique account number.
  • Signature panel: Credit cards must be signed in accordance with the terms stipulated by the credit card provider, whether or not the cardholder believes it. Merchants may refuse to accept a credit card if the signature field is left blank or if the words “See ID” appear in the signature box.
  • Security code: This three-digit code (or four-digit code for American Express) is necessary for processing “card not present” transactions. It is often referred to as the “card verification value” (CVV).
  • Chip cards (EMV cards): Unlike cards with merely magnetic stripes, chip cards encrypt data throughout each transaction, making fraud far more difficult.
  • Holographs: Standard on the majority of credit cards and specific to the card network.
  • Usage monitoring:If you make an unusual purchase, such as one for a big amount or at a different place than usual, your card issuer may flag the card and take efforts to verify the transaction was legitimate.

Some credit cards also come with additional security features:

  • Photos: Some credit card providers permit the generation of one-time use credit card numbers for internet purchases. Thus, if your card number is hacked, it is irrelevant, as you will never use it again.
  • Temporary purchase numbers: Some credit card providers permit the generation of one-time use credit card numbers for internet purchases. Thus, if your card number is hacked, it is irrelevant, as you will never use it again.
  • Virtual credit card numbers: A number of credit card companies offer virtual credit card numbers. These are digital representations of the real cards you own. In order to avoid fraud and identity theft while purchasing online or over the phone, they are frequently required. If your virtual card is compromised in any way, you can remove it and request a replacement.

6 Credit Card Security Don’ts

You can never be too cautious with your credit card number, despite all these security measures.

Here are six card security recommendations.

Don’t use debit cards

Simply put, debit cards do not give the same protections against fraud as credit cards. If a criminal without your knowledge takes and uses your debit card, you might be held personally accountable for $500 or more in unlawful payments (unless you report the fraud within two business days).

When is It Safe to Give out the Security Code on the Back of my Credit Card?

For unauthorized debit card transactions, your personal funds are at risk. With credit cards, the card issuer owns the funds. If you report fraudulent credit card transactions within sixty days, most card issuers will waive your obligation for such costs.

In situations of debit card fraud, it may be more difficult to obtain reimbursements, and the ensuing delays might cause missed payments and extra stress.

Don’t make transactions on open networks

When no password is required to enter a WiFi network, unencrypted data can be viewed by any nearby computer. Without “https” in the URL, these other machines may be able to intercept the data you send and receive from websites.

This implies that you may send your credit card number or other sensitive information directly to an identity thief.

Never submit your credit card details when using unprotected public WiFi networks or if you are unsure whether or not the website in question employs SSL.

Don’t share your number with unverified representatives

“Greetings, American Express calling. Please confirm your credit card number.

In order to obtain your credit card data, identity thieves will often impersonate a reputable institution, such as a fire department running a fundraiser or a utility company threatening to cut off your power.

Additionally, you should be cautious when clicking on links in emails whose sender’s email address appears to be questionable. “Phishing” is a prevalent internet fraud technique. Criminals may pose as your bank or credit card issuer in phishing emails.

In an attempt to steal your login credentials, these emails may request personal information or give you with a bogus link that appears legitimate.

Just remember: if you did not initiate the phone call or email, you should not provide your card information.

Contact the organization through its stated phone number or secure messaging channel to see if the request is real. Out of an excess of caution, you may also wish to adopt the practice of accessing the websites of your bank and credit card issuers directly, as opposed to via links supplied in emails.

Don’t email your card number

Some email hackers utilize search engines that check for sequences of digits that are probable credit card account numbers.

You raise your risk of exposure whenever you hand someone your credit card number in an unprotected, unencrypted format, even on paper.

Some businesses, such as websites for holiday rentals, want a credit card number as a deposit or guarantee. This is not a particularly safe practice, despite being common; you should explore alternatives.

Don’t share your card number where others can hear

Numerous valid financial transactions may need you to orally provide your credit card number and other sensitive details.

Anyone who hears you recite that information will be able to utilize it. These calls should be avoided in public settings.

Don’t post photos of your credit card

Although it may seem apparent, never post online photographs of your card. When it comes to photos, some individuals feel secure when the first eight numbers of their card are concealed. Others conceal the remaining eight. In any instance, it is a poor plan.

If you have a valid purpose for uploading a photo of your credit or debit card, which you probably do not, you should hide the numbers. Cover at minimum the last 10 numbers, which are unique to your account.

How to protect your credit card

1. Start early

By setting a good security foundation early, you can potentially avoid identity theft and credit card fraud.

Choose a secure password and PIN:  Don’t use the same password for online banking and credit as you do for other accounts. Create a strong password by avoiding sequential digits or letters, using a minimum of 15 characters, and a mixture of letters, numbers, and symbols. Never use sensitive information for your PIN, such as a portion of your social security number or your birthdate (personal identification number).

Turn on account alerts: Enable account alerts in order to be warned through phone, text message, or email of probable fraud on your card. In addition to other questionable behaviour, you might receive notifications to detect illegal charges.

Sign the back of your card: As soon as you receive your card, sign the back. This allows businesses to compare the signature on the card with the signature on the receipt to ensure a match.

2. Don’t share account information

Account information may easily slip into the wrong hands, therefore sharing it should be done with caution.

Never email account information: Never email your credit card number or account details. If a vendor asks you to do so, you should be wary immediately.

Don’t say account information where others can hear it:  If you must provide your credit card information over the phone, do it in a private location.When is It Safe to Give out the Security Code on the Back of my Credit Card?

Never give your social security number:  You’ll never need to give out your social security number for routine transactions. You should be wary if someone asks you for it.

Shred docs or go paperless: Shred old credit card statements and bills to prevent identity theft. Better yet, go paperless.

3. Stay secure online

Pay close attention to the following online buying security recommended practices:

Never keep credit card information on a website: if a website asks whether it may store your information, answer no. Additionally, you should avoid saving your credit card information using autofill on your computer.

Only shop using https: The’s’ following http denotes’secured,’ indicating that the information you are exchanging is encrypted.

Never using public Wi-Fi: With public WiFi, anyone may read your encrypted information. You should only purchase online over a secure connection.

Utilize an online payment method: Online payment methods, such as PayPal, can increase the security of your online transactions.

Sign out when done: Always log out of a website when you are done with it. This is particularly relevant while utilizing a shared computer.

4. Watch for phishing

Phishing refers to fraudulent efforts to get your account details. Examples of phishing include emails from unrecognized addresses or bogus links. To prevent being a victim of phishing, be careful to:

Never provide information during a call you did not initiate: If your bank calls and requests your account details, you should instantly be skeptical. Your bank will never contact you via phone or text message to verify your account, offer you a link purporting to be a new version of their online app, or request password security details such as the street you grew up on. Even if the phone number looks to be from your bank, it may still be a phishing scam.

Do not click on links from unfamiliar addresses: A frequent phishing tactic is to deliver a link that looks to be from a real bank or firm. If you click on the link, your information might be stolen.

Forward immediately any questionable emails: Immediately report any questionable emails you receive. Included among the indicators that an email is bogus are typographical errors, excessive spaces, and an email address that differs from a valid address just somewhat.

5. Report fraud ASAP

Immediately notify your bank if you discover account fraud.

Immediately dial your bank: As quickly as possible, notify your bank of fraud. If you clicked on a link in an email that turned out to be a phishing scam, you should forward a copy of the email to your bank so they have as much information as possible to assist you.

Double check receipts: Receipts should always be double-checked to ensure that they correspond with the account balance. This can assist in swiftly identifying illegal charges.

Never leave receipts behind: never discard or leave behind receipts. To secure your private information, file the documents you must save and trash the others.

Maintain a list at all times: Maintain an up-to-date list of your credit cards and their account numbers, as well as the contact information for your bank’s customer care. If your cards are ever taken, this will be quite beneficial.

6. Manage your passwords and accounts carefully

Make safe, unique passwords: Employ a password manager to generate and store passwords for every online account you create.

Frequently modify your passwords: In addition to developing unique passwords, it is prudent to alter them frequently.

Sign off after each transaction: Be sure to log out of any internet accounts, particularly if you’re using a computer that others may access.

Disable autofill: Web browsers frequently save your credit card information automatically. If you wish to be extra careful, do not utilize this function.

Ensure the website’s address begins with “https://” rather than “http://” prior to entering your credit card information online. The “s” stands for “secure,” which indicates that the information you provide via forms is encrypted.

7. Sign up for additional protections

Some credit card networks and issuers provide enhanced safety for online buyers. For instance, you can enroll in Mastercard Secure Number, which will require you to provide a six-digit code while making a transaction.

Comparable schemes include Visa Secure and Amex SafeKey, none of which requires registration. They operate in the background as you shop, occasionally requiring you to present proof of identity for suspect transactions. Occasionally, verification is as easy as sending a text message in response.

You may also utilize payment gateways, such as PayPal or Apple Pay, to create an extra layer of protection between yourself and online retailers.

8. Review your credit card transactions

You do not need to wait until your monthly bill is issued to check your credit card activities. Be proactive and check your account once every week for any fraudulent charges.

Even minor allegations that are dubious should not be overlooked. Although a $1 unrecognized charge may seem inconsequential, it’s worth investigating. Commonly, credit card fraudsters make a series of minor purchases to see if a card is still valid and usable. If a thief establishes that your credit card is “active,” he or she may proceed to make larger fraudulent charges.

Skimmers are used by credit card thieves to steal card information from ATMs and automated gas pumps. Skimmers fit over the card slot or PIN pad and have a similar appearance to a standard machine. Due to their difficulty to detect, it is essential to keep an eye on your invoices for any strange behavior.

9. Review your credit reports

Unauthorized charges on credit cards will not appear on credit records. However, fake accounts and credit applications may.

Once a year, you should pull your credit reports to verify their accuracy. If you wish to add monthly credit checks to your routine, doing so is not excessive.

Additionally, you might enroll in a credit monitoring service that notifies you of any questionable behavior on your Equifax®, TransUnion®, or ExperianTM credit reports.

10. Shred your documents

Use a paper shredder before placing invoices, pre-approved credit offers, and other financial documents in the recycling bin. You do not want these documents to fall into the wrong hands as they may contain sensitive, personal information.

Some identity thieves utilize low-tech means, such as garbage diving, to collect information. The information on unshredded financial papers might be used by identity thieves to create accounts and “replacement” credit cards in your name.

It is difficult and time-consuming to retrieve your information after a fraudster has obtained it. Since paper shredders cost roughly $30, we’d argue the additional security is well worth the investment.

Where Can I Find My CVV Number?

The CVV of your card is printed on the card, however its placement may change. The CVV is normally placed on the back of Visa, Mastercard, and Discover cards, to the far right of the signature area.

The four-digit security code for an American Express card is often printed above the credit card number on the card’s face. Some cards may have the security code in a different position, such as underneath the credit card number on the back.

When is It Safe to Give out the Security Code on the Back of my Credit Card?

Without your card, it may be impossible to determine your CVV number. Typically, it is not possible to view your CVV number online. Nevertheless, there are exceptions. Some credit cards offer mobile app access to card information.

How Does My CVV Code Work?

The use of card security codes is a kind of two-factor authentication. Two-factor authentication employs two pieces of information, such as a credit card number and a CVV, to verify that you are the cardholder. As a result, the CVV helps prevent fraud, according to Monica Eaton-Cardone, co-founder and chief operating officer of the risk mitigation and chargeback management company Chargebacks911.

Eaton-Cardone explains, “If a buyer can accurately enter the card’s CVV at checkout, it is likely that the individual has the card in his or her physical possession.” This makes it more difficult for thieves to utilize stolen cardholder information to commit fraud.

According to Nicolas Beique, founder and chief executive officer of the payment processing company Helcim, a transaction should be refused if the incorrect code is entered.

Even though rules restrict shops from holding your CVV information, Eaton-Cardone cautions that online transactions can still be permitted without the CVV. For example, many subscription services only require the CVV during sign-up; subsequent transactions can be permitted without it.

Eaton-Cardone states that the CVV is similar to a seatbelt for credit cards. It is but one safety step that, when combined with others, may provide many levels of credit card protection.

How Much Security Does a CVV Offer?

A CVV code is an additional layer of protection that makes fraud more difficult but not impossible.

Bruce McClary, senior vice president of communications for the National Foundation for Credit Counseling, states, “There is a lower likelihood that your account would be utilized to make unlawful transactions if someone acquires your credit card information without the CVV code.”

“You may still be at risk if your card is used without your knowledge on a website that does not need the CVV code to be input.”

Cybercriminal activity poses extra concerns. Malware is software that cybercriminals can use to obtain shops’ security codes.

Credit card CVV numbers are also subject to phishing assaults, in which criminals use bogus emails or clone websites to deceive cardholders into divulging critical information, such as security codes. Texts or phone calls that appear to be from your credit card provider and ask for your CVV number to confirm a recent transaction are a typical scam. If you receive a similar message, you should disregard it and contact your credit card issuer instead.

What about giving out my CVV offline?

When completing a credit card payment over the phone, you may additionally be required to provide the card’s security code. As with online purchases, it is generally secure to do so; but, you must ensure that no one overhears your information (so avoid public places when doing this).

Conversely, you should never reveal your CVV information while purchasing a product or service in person. In truth, neither the store nor the service provider need to seek this. The CVV is not shown when the card is scanned routinely, and merchants and service providers have additional methods of validating that you are the authorized card holder, such as a signature or other form of identity, if necessary.

The only point of supplying your CVV for offline transactions is to provide someone the opportunity to steal the information. Because, if they did so, they would have everything they need to conduct a number of fraudulent online transactions.

Add extra protection against credit card fraud

Even if being cautious with your CVV and credit card information can help you avoid fraud, you can add an additional layer of security with a comprehensive cybersecurity solution like AVG AntiVirus FREE. Prevent hackers, viruses, and malware, as well as phishing schemes, from infecting your system via hazardous links and email attachments. AVG provides continuous security in the background, allowing you to shop online in peace.

Which Bank Offers the Best Credit Card Security?

The security of no credit card is significantly superior to that of any other.

All of the top credit cards have robust security features. If you take appropriate care, you should be OK.

Just keep in mind that no security measure can replace human caution, awareness, and regular self-monitoring.


The security code on the back of your credit card has the following purpose: to give you peace of mind. To make sure you didn’t lose it somewhere and someone uses it in case you don’t have it.
So when should you tell people about this code? Here are three situations:

1) In case of a lost or stolen card;

2) At checkout at a store (which is a really safe place to do this, but you could also do it during a phone call, or in person);

3) Before giving out your own credit card number, when you receive an email request for a credit card payment. (See the link at the end for a list of free tools to use.)


CVV: Every debit and credit card has a card verification value or CVV number on its reverse. This number is vital for completing online transactions. This too is clearly printed on your card, and you should not share it with anyone.
Never give your PIN to anyone on the phone, the internet or in the post. The only numbers you should need to give out are the card number on the front of your card and any security code (this is usually a 3-digit code on the signature strip of your card).
Merchant’s can request the CVV code from card holders as another way to screen fraudulent transactions. The idea is that someone using a stolen credit card is less likely to have this code so they will be unable to complete the transaction.


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