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What is a card “security code” (CVV or CVC) and what purpose does it serve?

All or most credit (and debit and prepaid) cards have a special numerical code used by many merchants to verify that the card is in your possession when you make purchases by phone or on the internet. This three- or four-digit number, also known as a CVC (credit verification code) or CVV (card verification value), is found on the back of the card, typically at the end of the space where you sign the card. If your card number and expiration date were stolen, but not the card itself, the thief would not have access to this security code.


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What is a card “security code” (CVV or CVC) and what purpose does it serve?


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