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Your Credit Card Number Isn’t Random—Here’s How To Decipher It
By Mikelle Leow, 04 Aug 2021
Photo 151657816 © Apichon Pechnun | Dreamstime.com
Do you, like most people, have trouble remembering your credit card number? One key method for retention is to give it meaning. Luckily for you, those cryptic numbers actually represent something, and this new video by the Half as Interesting channel breaks them down.
First and foremost, your primary credit card number—the 16 digits that make up the front—is actually split into three sections. That’s interesting to know, but let’s dive deeper.
The first six to eight digits identify the issuer of the card, with the first digit itself indicating the nature of business (one or two for airlines, three for travel, four to six for banking, and so on). There’s also specific identification for Visa, MasterCard, and American Express cardholders.
And the last digit, called the ‘Check Digit’, is the outcome of a formula between all the other numbers. Machines use it to verify that the credit card number is valid; enter any of the digits wrongly, and they would automatically know it is invalid without running it by a database.
Discover more geeky trivia about your credit card in the video below.
[via Boing Boing, cover image 151657816 © Apichon Pechnun | Dreamstime.com]
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