When shopping online or over the phone, you are often asked for your credit card CVV number, sometimes called a card security code. CVV is short for Card Verification Value and is an important security feature.
CVV is a three or four-digit code that is printed on your credit card to prevent fraud. If you provide a CVV number for purchase online or over the phone, the merchant will provide the CVV when authorizing the transaction. It is an attempt to verify that you have the physical card in your possession and not just use the information from the stolen card.
Debit and credit cards have a three-digit CVV printed on the back of the card, usually next to the signature field. At times, you will also see the last four digits of your card account number and the three-digit CVV; these four digits appear in front of your CVV and do not count as CVV. Therefore, do not enter this when your CVV is requested online.
With the four-card matrices, the CVV is printed on the card and not in raised letters.
The value of CVV numbers lies in how merchants store your credit card information.
Merchants who process credit card transactions can save your card details (with your permission) so you don’t have to re-enter them every time you buy something on the website. However, if your card information is saved, it could be stolen in one of the most common data breaches.
CVV adds another layer of protection. Security standards in the payments industry prohibit merchants from storing CVV numbers. This way, even if a database is compromised, the hackers will not have the CVV and will have nowhere to use the stolen card numbers where the code is required.
This leads to the main question of why websites that process recurring payments, can process payments to a saved credit card without having to re-enter your CVV each time. . These websites generally ask for your CVV the first time you use a card. Of them consider that this card is valid for their account. However, if your data is stolen, the CVV will not be included in it, so it will be of limited use elsewhere.