Card Verification Value or Card Verification code.

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A Card Verification Value (CVV or CVV2) or Card Verification Code (CVC) is the three- or four-digit security number on the front or rear of a payment card. The different names are because various credit and debit card brands use their own terminology, for instance a four-digit CVV on the front of American Express cards or a three-digit CVV2 number on the back of VISA cards.

These security codes are used to check whether the person making a payment has their card with them during a Card Not Present (CNP) transaction. It helps to safeguard debit and credit cards against fraud, theft, and unauthorized transactions. So, even if the debit card number and expiry date are stolen, a transaction cannot happen without the CVV.

With CNP fraud on the rise, companies must do everything they can to take payments securely. Asking customers for the code offers fraud prevention, financial and customer experience benefits. Any company taking payments must also comply with PCI DSS requirements.