Your account number is one of the most important segments of your credit or debit card. These are the digits that allow you to make purchases online.
So where can you find your account number on your credit or debit card? This guide will help you.
You can locate your account number on the front portion of your credit or debit card. This is part of the 16-digit number, either embossed or printed, on the lower section, right on top of the credit or credit card expiration date and cardholder name.
Credit and debit cards usually have 16 digits, but this may be anywhere between 12 to 19 figures. The format follows the standards set by the International Organization for Standardization and International Electrotechnical Commission.
Also known as primary account numbers (PANs), credit and debit card numbers consist of three main sections – card issuer information, account information, and a check digit.
The first part is the information about the card’s issuer. This consists of the industry number and the issuer identification number (IIN) or the bank identification number (BIN).
The INN typically consists of six to eight digits, but this is transitioning to eight digits only under the direction of the ISO. This is mainly to prevent the shortage of potential IINs.
The second half of the PAN contains your account information. Except for the last digit, they are selected by the card issuer and are unique to your particular credit or debit card account.
Your account number is composed of nine digits. If your credit or debit card number has 16 digits, the seventh to 15th digits are your account number.
When you look at the 16-digit code, the first number indicates which industry issued the card. This is called the Major Industry Identifier (MII).
Different industries have their MII. For instance, the code for ISO industries is 1, while the petroleum trade code is 8.
For VISA, the MII code is 4. Meanwhile, the code for Mastercard is 5. This means that VISA card accounts start with the number 4, and MasterCard accounts begin with the number 5.
After the MII comes the INN or BIN. This number tells merchants what type of card you have and which bank issued your card.
Both the MII and INN are not considered part of your account number.
Your account number starts on the seventh to 15th digit in your credit or debit card number. The 16th or the last digit is known as the check digit.
The check digit determines if your credit or debit card is valid or not. This is not picked by the card issuer but decided mathematically based on the Luhn algorithm.
Like the MII and INN, the check digit is excluded from your account number.
Aside from the front section of your credit or debit card, you can also find your account number online or via the app of your card issuer. You can also check it on your monthly statement.
If you have online access to your credit or credit card account, you can easily get your account number by logging in to your account.
You will also find your account number on your billing statement. If you have kept a copy of your old statements, you can find the account number usually on top of the statement date and due date.
No. Your credit or debit card number is the full 16-digit code you can find written on the front part of the card. The account number is part of that code. Specifically, your account number consists of the seventh to 15th digits in your credit or debit card number.
When you shop online, you will need to input the full 16-digit card number, alongside the card’s expiration date and security code.
The security code is typically the three-digit number found on the back of your credit or debit card.
Sometimes, you will also be asked to key in the cardholder’s name when making a purchase.
Yes. It is generally safe to give out your credit or debit card account number to other people. However, you should still be wary of individuals who will take advantage of you.
An account number is needed to deposit money into your account. For instance, your employer will require you to give your account number to set up a direct deposit for your salary.
You will also need to input your account number when you use online payment services, like PayPal and Venmo. Your account number is also visible when you write a check for someone else.
While these are safe options, it is still not advised to give out your account number to just anyone. You should never give out this information to persons you trust.
If someone asks you for your credit or debit card account number, you should ask probing questions like who will have access to the data and how they will store your information.
Never give out your address, social security number, or driver’s license.
Fortunately, your account cannot be accessed by account number alone. While they can deposit money into your account, they will not be able to get much further.
As long as they do not have the information needed to log in to your account or verify your identity, they will not get access to your money.
These include your PIN, online password, and security code.
You do not need to give these data as they are not required to make deposits or transfer money. Anyone who claims they need them is likely up to no good.
If someone is using your account number without your authorization, you should report it to your bank, credit card issuer, or credit union immediately.
You should contact the fraud department of your bank so they can help you handle the situation. You may also reach out to fraud agencies, such as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the US Department of Justice’s Fraud Section.
Your bank may forward your case to the police. When you file for a police report, make sure that you get a copy for your records.
Finally, while waiting for a resolution to your predicament, you should watch your account activity and keep track of your transactions. Identify which are yours and which ones are not.