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Those numbers in the front of your credit card they aren’t just random they give away specific information about your card and where it comes from the first digit of your credit card number is the industry identifier this tells you the industry of the credit card issuer for example airline industry cards begin with a 1 or a 2 travel or entertainment cards such as American Express or diners club cards begin with the 3 all visa credit cards start with a 4 MasterCard with a 5 and 6 are dedicated to discovering the first six digits on your card including the industry identifier represent the issuer.
Identification number this identifies the bank that issued the card and then, of course, there’s your personal account number this is made up of the seventh digit on everything except the last number on your card the final digit on your credit card is known as the check digit or checksum this number is set by something called the lung formula patented by an IBM scientist in 1960 the formula uses the numerals in your cards account number to verify that it’s valid various combinations of the digits of the card must ultimately add up to a number divisible by 10 the formula is mostly used to protect against input errors for example.
Let’s say you enter in the wrong numbers on an online shopping site the formula will compute the digits don’t add up right telling you you’ve entered an invalid card number that last digit of your credit card make sure the formula works like it’s supposed to and now you know there’s a lot of information on that little card in your wallet Kristin Wong credit cards calm