Bank Identification Number - BIN

DEFINITION of 'Bank Identification Number - BIN'

The first four to six digits of a credit card. The bank identification number identifies the institution issuing the card. It is critical to the correct matching of transactions to the issuer of the charge card.

This prefix system also applies to debit cards, charge cards and electronic benefit cards.

BREAKING DOWN 'Bank Identification Number - BIN'

Although it is called a bank identification number, BINs are also used by other institutions, such as American Express. As increasing numbers of issuers are opting into the BIN network, the term issuer identification number (IIN) is increasingly used interchangeably with BIN.

The prefix system is also used to help identify potential security breaches or identity theft, by comparing such things as the location of the issuing institution and the address of the cardholder.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Offline Debit Card

    A card that combines characteristics of both a traditional (online) ...
  2. Credit Card

    A card issued by a financial company giving the holder an option ...
  3. Charge Card

    A card that charges no interest but requires the user to pay ...
  4. Identity Theft

    The crime of obtaining the personal or financial information ...
  5. Credit Limit

    The amount of credit that a financial institution extends to ...
  6. Account Number

    The primary identifier for ownership of an account, whether a ...
Related Articles
  1. Insurance

    Identity Theft: How To Avoid It

    Don't be a victim of this disturbing crime. Get insight into how perpetrators commit this form of fraud.
  2. Credit & Loans

    Credit, Debit And Charge: Sizing Up The Cards In Your Wallet

    Not all plastic is equal! Learn the difference between the three kinds, and how each can affect your finances.
  3. Credit & Loans

    Take Control Of Your Credit Cards

    The plastic in your wallet doesn't have to hurt your finances. Learn how to manage it responsibly.
  4. Budgeting

    Should You Pay In Cash?

    Avoiding all forms of plastic payment can do wonders for your stress level and pocket book.
  5. Credit & Loans

    How Credit Cards Built A Plastic Empire

    A decade before Mastercard or Visa existed, the first credit card company was introduced.
  6. Options & Futures

    6 Major Credit Card Mistakes

    Avoid these pitfalls to keep your credit score healthy and your debt under control.
  7. Credit & Loans

    10 Reasons To Use Your Credit Card

    There are several benefits to paying with credit instead of debit, if you use a credit card responsibly.
  8. Credit & Loans

    5 Extreme Ways To Raise Your Credit Score

    Desperate to rebuild your credit score because you can’t obtain a loan with a decent interest rate? Here are some extreme options to try.
  9. Personal Finance

    The Top 5 Personal Finance Experts to Follow in 2016

    Here is a look at five money and investing experts who can help you reach your financial goals for 2016.
  10. Economics

    What is a Trade Credit?

    Trade credit means that a customer purchases goods from a seller who allows the purchaser to pay for those goods at a later time.
RELATED FAQS
  1. How can you pay your Walmart credit card?

    Holders of Walmart credit cards can make payments on their balances due by mail, online or at Walmart and Sam's Club stores. ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Is Apple Pay safe and free?

    Apple Pay is a mobile payment system created by Apple to reduce the number of times shoppers and buyers have to pay for goods ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Can you use your Walmart credit card at Sam's Club?

    Consumers can use their Walmart credit cards to shop at Sam's Club. However, they cannot use their Walmart credit cards when ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How can you cancel your Walmart credit card?

    Walmart offers two types of credit cards: the Walmart MasterCard and the Walmart credit card. How to Close Your Walmart Credit ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. Does the Walmart credit card have an annual fee?

    The Walmart credit card does not charge annual fees to its cardholders. It does, however, have other fees associated with ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. How do NetSpend cards work?

    NetSpend prepaid MasterCard and Visa cards are popular prepaid debit cards requiring no minimum balance and no credit check. ... Read Full Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Black Swan

    An event or occurrence that deviates beyond what is normally expected of a situation and that would be extremely difficult ...
  2. Inverted Yield Curve

    An interest rate environment in which long-term debt instruments have a lower yield than short-term debt instruments of the ...
  3. Socially Responsible Investment - SRI

    An investment that is considered socially responsible because of the nature of the business the company conducts. Common ...
  4. Presidential Election Cycle (Theory)

    A theory developed by Yale Hirsch that states that U.S. stock markets are weakest in the year following the election of a ...
  5. Super Bowl Indicator

    An indicator based on the belief that a Super Bowl win for a team from the old AFL (AFC division) foretells a decline in ...
Trading Center