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Credit Card is very common word we hear now a days from friends, family members and colleagues. Still majority of people are not familiar with what is credit card? how does it work? what are the benefits associated with credit card? How credit card is different from debit card or ATM Card?

Also read: How does a credit card work?

Before covering credit card in more details lets understand what is credit card

What is credit card?

A Credit Card is financial instrument that allows you to make purchases on credit and repay the amount at later date with or without interest. Every credit card comes with a predetermined credit limit which is decided by issuing bank. Credit limit of a card is approved limit of amount by issuing bank up to which purchases of goods / services can be made through online or offline mode.

If you’re planning to apply for a credit card first time for yourself in the near future, here we are sharing know your card before you get the one and start using it. A credit card is a handy plastic card contains information embossed at front side or printed on reverse side/back side. Front side of the card has following information embossed on it.

  1. Bank Name: Issuing bank name appears here i.e. Citibank, SBICard, HDFC Bank.
  2. Credit Card No:   Every Card has 16-digit credit card no embossed on it, this no is also referred as credit card account no. Every card has unique credit card number and this is most vital information for your cards identification.
  3. Account Holder Name: Account holder full name is also printed on front side of the card, which confirm ownership of the card.
  4. Expiry date: Every card has an expiry date mentioned under “VALID THRU”. This date is printed in MM/YY format and used mandatory while doing online transaction.  
  5. Card payment organizer / Network Logo: This logo belongs to card payment network service provider. The major credit card networks in India are Visa and Mastercard; these cover the major marketplace. Other players are Discover, American Express and RuPay
  6. Chip: Chip-and-PIN cards are credit cards with improved security features. A chip-and-signature card uses a data-enabled microchip and requires consumers to provide a signature to complete transactions. chip-and-PIN cards do not require customers to sign their receipts.
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Back side or reverse side of the card has following information printed on it

  1. Magnetic Strip: The stripe on the back of a credit card is a magnetic stripe. The magnetic stripe card is embedded with codes that identify the user. However, magnetic stripe cards now are being phased out and replaced by more secure microchip technology.
  2. Signature Bar: A signature strip is an area on the back of a card coated with a white or grey material that holds ink. Imprinted above it are words to the effect of “Authorized signature, not valid unless signed.” This is an effort to discourage unauthorized use. While that may work in practice, merchants are not supposed to accept such cards.
  3. CVV: CVV stands for Card Verification Value. This number is vital for completing online transactions and should never be shared with anyone.

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