What is a Signature Panel Code

What is a Signature Panel Code

Have you ever noticed a small three or four-digit code on the credit card? This panel code, known as a Signature Panel Code, serves as an added layer of security for cardholders. This code is often requested during online transactions to verify the cardholder’s identity and prevent fraud.

It is important to note that many individuals keep this panel code private as an extra precaution against unauthorized use. In this article, we will delve deeper into the purpose and significance of the Signature Panel Code, and we will discuss what is a Signature Panel Code.

What is a Signature Panel Code?

The Signature Panel Code (SPC) is a unique identification feature on checks and other negotiable instruments. Its purpose is to facilitate electronic processing by the banking system and verify the check’s authenticity, preventing any potential counterfeit or stolen check scenarios. The SPC comprises a series of numbers and letters easily scanned and read by computers.

This code serves to make the check-clearing process more efficient and secure. Additionally, the SPC is also used by merchants as a way to confirm the legitimacy of a customer’s card transactions.

All of the card brands, including Mastercard, Visa, American Express, and Discover, must have an SPC on each card they make. Mastercard, Visa, and Discover will make this signature code as a 3-digit number, and American Express will offer it as a 4-digit number.

The merchants will ask customers to provide the code and send it to the credit card providers. The card issuer will validate the code and send it back to the merchant for authorization.

Different Types of Signature Panel Codes

Every credit card company and the bank has its unique signature panel or security code, CVV numbers. These codes serve the same purpose of providing an extra layer of security during transactions, particularly when they are made online or over the phone.

You may be asked to provide this code to verify your identity and prevent fraudulent activity. The code can be found on the back of your credit card or check and typically consists of numbers. These codes are essential to maintaining the safety and security of online and phone transactions.

  • CSC – Card Security Code
  • CVV – Card Verification Value
  • CVN – Card Verification Number
  • CVD – Card Verification Data
  • CVVC – Card Verification Value Code
  • SPC – Signature Panel Code
  • CVC – Card Verification Code

Where can I Find The Panel Code?

The location of the security code can vary depending on the card brand. Discover, Visa, and MasterCard cards typically have a three-digit code on the back after the account number. Some banks, however, only show the last 4 digits of the number.

On the other hand, American Express cards have a four-digit code on the front, typically on the right side. It’s important to note that the location of this code is not always consistent across all cards. Hence, it’s a good idea to check the instructions provided by your bank or credit card company for specific information on where to find your code.

What is the SPC Used For?

When making a transaction, you can swipe the card, put it into a PIN reader and chip, or click it for a contactless payment. This just gives the merchant your card’s information, which is then sent electronically to the card issuer, such as a bank, for verification.

Occasionally, you may be prompted to give out your PIN for particular transactions, such as not supporting contactless payments or withdrawing money.

When making a credit card transaction online or over the phone, merchants may request a security code to verify the cardholder’s identity. This is because the traditional chip-reading or swiping methods are unavailable in these scenarios. The code gives the merchant more data about the cardholder and their card.

The signature panel, or security code on the back of a credit card, also serves as an added layer of security and protection. Even if a criminal were to take a picture of the front of the card or see it fast, they would only be able to access the expiration date and card number.

However, the security code is located on the back of the card, making it harder for them to obtain it without handling it. Additionally, they would also need the cardholder’s PIN if they have the front information of the card. This is why keeping your security code private and always memorized is important.

Should You Share the SPC?

Sharing your SPC with a retailer is sometimes necessary for specific situations, such as when making a purchase online through a safe page on the phone. While a scammer may be able to obtain your expiration date, card number, and name, they will find it more challenging to gain access to your security code.

It is essential to be vigilant as scammers may use various tactics to obtain your security code. They may call you, pretend to be your bank, and ask for the code over the phone. However, knowing that the bank will never acquire sensitive information about finance over the phone is essential. If someone asks to give it this way, do not do it. Always keep your code private.

It is acceptable if you purchase and need to provide your security code over the phone. However, it is essential to note that retailers will never keep this data. If a retailer is calling you and asks for the code, it could be a scam call, and you should not provide them with the code.


A signature panel code, also known as a security code, is crucial to maintaining the security of credit card transactions. This code is a unique identification feature on the back of a credit card and is used to verify the cardholder’s identity.

It is an essential measure in preventing fraudsters from obtaining sensitive cardholder information. When making online or phone transactions, merchants may ask for this code as an added layer of security.

The location of the code can vary depending on the card brand. Visa, MasterCard, and Discover cards typically have a three-digit code on the back immediately after the account number. On the other hand, American Express cards have a four-digit code on the front of the card, typically located on the right-hand side.

As a consumer, it is vital to keep your signature panel code private and not share it with anyone. It is also important to memorize the code and not have it written down or stored in a place that others can easily access.

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