What is a csc on a credit card?

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A Card Security Code (CSC), also known as a Card Verification Value (CVV) or Card Verification Code (CVC), is a crucial security feature found on credit cards. This three or four-digit code is typically located on the back of the card and serves as an additional layer of protection against fraudulent transactions. In this article, we will delve deeper into the significance of the CSC on a credit card and its role in ensuring secure online and in-person transactions.

Understanding the CSC

The CSC is a unique code associated with each credit card and is not embossed or printed on the card’s front. This intentional placement aims to prevent unauthorized individuals from easily obtaining the code. The purpose of the CSC is to verify that the person making a transaction possesses the physical card and has access to the code.

Types of CSC

There are different types of CSCs used by credit card issuers. The most common ones include:

CVV1: This type of CSC is encoded on the magnetic stripe of the credit card and is used for in-person transactions where the card is physically swiped or inserted into a card reader.

CVV2: CVV2 is the most prevalent type of CSC found on credit cards. It is printed on the back of the card, usually in the signature panel, and is used for online or card-not-present transactions.

CVC2: Similar to CVV2, CVC2 is a code used by some card issuers, particularly in Europe, for online transactions. It serves the same purpose as CVV2.

Importance of the CSC

The CSC plays a vital role in preventing fraudulent transactions. By requiring the CSC during online or card-not-present transactions, merchants can verify that the person making the purchase has the physical card in their possession. This adds an extra layer of security, as even if a fraudster manages to obtain the card number, expiration date, and cardholder’s name, they would still need the CSC to complete the transaction.

Additionally, the CSC helps protect against data breaches. In the event of a data breach where cardholder information is compromised, the stolen data may not include the CSC. This makes it more challenging for cybercriminals to use the stolen information for fraudulent purposes.

Using the CSC

When making an online purchase, you will typically be prompted to enter the CSC along with your card number, expiration date, and billing address. This information is used to authenticate the transaction and ensure that the cardholder is the one initiating the purchase. It is important to note that the CSC should only be used for legitimate transactions on secure websites. It should never be shared with anyone or entered on suspicious or unsecured platforms.


The CSC, also known as the CVV or CVC, is an essential security feature on credit cards. It provides an additional layer of protection against fraudulent transactions, particularly for online or card-not-present purchases. By requiring the CSC, merchants can verify that the person making the transaction has the physical card and is authorized to use it. It is crucial to keep the CSC confidential and only use it on secure platforms to ensure the utmost security for credit card transactions.


– Visa: www.visa.com
– Mastercard: www.mastercard.com
– American Express: www.americanexpress.com