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Verified by Visa program

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Protect your credit while you shop online with Verified by Visa.

Shopping online has never been easier, with personal shoppers, grocery delivery and same-day shipping. But with each credit card transaction, you’re opening yourself up to credit card hackers.

Verified by Visa is designed to make online purchases with your Visa credit card even more secure. Non VBV credit cards have first-level protection — requiring only your card number, expiration date and CVC on the back of the card. Unfortunately hackers can often find ways around it to gain access to your card.

Verified by Visa (VBV) is a free program offered by Visa that gives you an added level of protection. It’s an easy way to get peace of mind while shopping online. Entering a password each time you use your card online adds another layer of security, proving your identity.

How does VBV work?

When you shop online you want quick and easy — and you expect safety. Thousands of online merchants have enrolled in VBV adding an extra layer of protection to make shopping online safer. What this means for you is more confidence in your purchases knowing your identity is protected.

Verified by Visa works by asking you to provide additional information — either from you directly or by looking at your past purchasing behavior to ensure it’s you making the purchase. This security check gives your card an added level of protection each time you use it.

Making a purchase. After you’ve enter your credit card details on a site that uses VBV, you’ll see a Verified by Visa message box pop up. This is your bank communicating with you directly. You’ll see a message that you created when you signed up — one that only you and your bank know.

Verify. You verify your identity with a password or a code that is sent to your cell phone — depending on your bank.

NOTE: If you don’t see the Verified by Visa message, and instead see a revolving wheel, not to worry, it means that your bank is verifying your purchase with a background check.

Why should I enroll in VBV?

It’s free. It’s free to sign up and to use — every time.

Security. Be confident each time you make a purchase online with the extra layer of protection.

Easy to use. There’s no apps or software to upload and can be used on your phone or computer.

How do I enroll?

In order to use VBV both your Visa credit card, and the merchant you’re buying from, need to be registered. Check with your Visa issuer to see if it participates.

It’s quick and easy to activate any of your Visa credit cards online and there’s no need for you to get a new Visa card. If you visit a merchant that uses VBV, you may be asked to join before you make your purchase.

Depending on your bank, you may be asked to create a personal message that appears on the screen during your purchase, or you’ll get a personal password sent to your cell phone. Once you’ve registered and created your password you’re instantly protected.

If you have more than one cardholder on your credit cards, each one needs to be registered to create individual passwords and messages.

Once you’re registered, and you find a registered VBV merchant, this is what you’ll see when completing your purchase.

Tips for safe online shopping

It’s easy to think your credit card is protected each time you shop online, but hackers are looking for unsecured sites and and unknowing users. Keep these tips in mind when you use your cards online:

  • Trust your merchants. Shop on sites you know and trust, or research them first.
  • Delivery and return policies. Know your rights when it comes to delivery and return policies.
  • Customer service. Be sure that customer service contact info is somewhere on the site.
  • Confirmation email. Hang on to those confirmation emails after you make a purchase. They’re your record if something goes wrong.
  • Security. To be sure you’re on a secure website, look for the lock or key signs at the bottom of your browser window.
  • Address. The website address should appear https:// rather than http:// the “s” denotes a secure website.

Bottom line

Online shopping isn’t going anywhere. We’ve grown to appreciate our groceries delivered to our door and Amazon Prime packages delivered hours after our order. To protect yourself from potential hackers, check with your bank to see if they participate in VBV.

Frequently asked questions

Will I get an email from Verified by Visa to update my details?

Hackers have lots of ways to get ahold your your credit card information, sending you an email is one of them. You will never get an email from Verified by Visa — it is not a person or a company. And Visa will never ask you to update your info via email.

If I’m a merchant, how does VBV benefit me?

The biggest benefit merchants see with VBV is increased consumer confidence leading to more purchases. It also helps fight fraudulent charges — helping your bottom line. Fighting credit card fraud helps everyone.

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