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Bank Verification Number: Key Facts About BVN in Nigeria

Last Updated on February 2, 2021 by Ope Quadri

In this post, we will provide answers to some of the questions about Bank Verification Number (BVN) in Nigeria and how it could impact your financial transactions.


Categories of Bank Verification Number

  1. BVN for Individual
  2. BVN for Corporate Account

What is BVN all about?

BVN means Bank Verification Bank. It’s one of the security measures introduced by the Central bank of Nigeria (CBN).

How do I check my BVN on my mobile phone?

You can use USSD code to check your BVN number without internet connection or going to the bank where you registered.

To check or retrieve your BVN via sms: dial *565*0#

The 11-digit number displayed on your mobile phone is your BVN.

Does it work on any GSM number?


You can dial the above code on MTN, Glo, Airtel, 9Mobilet or any GSM lines linked to your bank account. This means the above code works perfectly well on any line, provided the line is registered on your bank account number.

Is it free to check BVN on my phone?

It is not free, you’ll be charged 25 Naira to use BVN checking code: *565*0#

Benefits of Bank Verification Number

  1. To provide additional security for account holders.
  2. It is to ensure that account holders are known by their banker in what CBN calls, “Know Your Customer” principle.
  3. To give a unified identity to account holders across all the banks in Nigeria, meaning BVN code can be used as a means of identification in any bank in Nigeria.
  4. To reduce queue in banking halls.
  5. To reduce fraud that may arise from impersonation.
  6. To checkmate and curb identity theft.
  7. The project is to ensure accountability.
  8. To increase the effectiveness of banking operations.
  9. It is to give customer access to future credit facilities.
  10. It is also meant to boost financial inclusionwhich the CBN has been committed to.
  11. It resolves the problem of authentication.
  12. To checkmates money laundering activities.
  13. To build confidence between banks and their customers.

How much does it cost to enrol for BVN?

It is totally free. It costs you nothing and nothing is deducted from your account for registering.

Who came up with the idea of Bank Verification Number?

Central Bank of Nigeria and the Bankers Committee came up with BVN project.

When was it launched?

The project came into being in February 2014 as a result of a successful partnership between the apex bank CBN and the Bankers Committee.

Who was it designed for?

It is designed for everybody who owns an account with financial institution in Nigeria.

But can I carry out my financial activities on my mobile phone

The enrollment is meant for everybody irrespective of the device you use in as much you have an account with any financial institution in Nigeria, and you wish to continue using the account.

How do I register for BVN?

Visit any branch of a bank where you have an account. If you’re just opening an account, you can do it alongside account opening. It is one of the requirements for account opening.

What is the process involved? 

6 Easy Steps to Enroll and Get Bank Verification Number (BVN)

  1. Walk into any branches of your bank.
  2. Request for BVN enrollment form from customer service officer
  3. Fill the form and head straight to where the enrollment is being done
  4. Present yourself for data capturing like fingerprint and facial image
  5. You are issued with an acknowledgment slip also known as enrollment receipt which contains the registration ID like ticket ID, name of the bank you registered, your name, date, and time the registration was done.
  6. You get a unique BVN within 24 hours through SMS notification after the system confirms the enrollment

What is enrolment?

Enrollment involves capturing a customer’s fingerprint, facial image and other necessary detail after which Bank Verification Number is generated.

Is proxy registration allowed?

Someone else cannot enroll on your behalf. You have to be physically present because your fingerprints and facial image would be taken. Your fingerprints and facial image cannot be the same with another person that’s why you have to enroll by yourself irrespective of your position.

These are the details you are expected to fill:

  • Surname
  • Middle name
  • First name,
  • Account number,
  • Means of identification: you can use your INEC voters card, or national Identity No, or any other verifiable means of identification.

How do I get my Bank Verification Number after the enrolment?

You’re issued a ticket to confirm your enrolment. However, you will receive SMS alert stating your BVN. So, make sure you use active GSM line.

Is it security-wise to store my BVN on my phone?

It is not security advisable to store any sensitive banking information concerning your financial details on your mobile phone, unless you’re sure of other means of encrypt it.

However, it will still be extremely difficult, at least for now, for someone else to use your BVN because the person’s fingerprints will be different from yours. It means your BVN is not useful for the person that steals it.

What should I do if I forget my BVN?

Visit your bank where you did the enrolment to retrieve the number.
Or simply
Dial *565*0# and send. Your 11-digit will be displayed, that’s your BVN Number.

How secure is customers’ information?

According to Central Bank of Nigeria, customers’ information is secure, and that the details are encrypted and stored in a secure database.

However, there are conditions and terms

“The bank shall not be liable for breaches/disclosures that may occur if it is compelled by law or regulation to disclose customer biometrics data to third parties. However, the bank shall exercise due care to ensure that the customers biometrics data is secure and protected.”

Will the change of address affect my BVN?

It doesn’t change your BVN, all you need do is go to your bank and follow the bank’s process of updating customer information. You can only update banking information only at the bank where you have an account.

Can I Enrol for BVN in First Bank and get the BVN from Guaranty Trust Bank?

No. You can only get your BVN at the bank you enrolled. No cross-collection of BVN. But only one BVN is needed for multiple accounts.

What happens if a customer is an amputee or his fingers are badly damaged due to a disease?

His facial features will be used instead of his fingerprints

Will I have to enrol in all the banks I have accounts?

No, once you enrolled at one bank and a BVN is generated, the number can be used in other banks where you have accounts.

It means enrolment is necessary in one bank. A customer cannot have more than one Bank Verification Number.

Can I start the enrollment now and complete at later date?

 No. the enrollment is and should be completed in one session.

Will biometric function be implemented on POS and ATM terminals?

Yes. It will be implemented on POS and ATM at a later stage.

How will it be implemented on ATM and POS?

You won’t be able to access your bank account without enrolling and linking your BVN with your bank account.

One of the workers at the Obafemi Awolowo University Teaching Hospital Complex (OAUTHC), Ile-Ife, Osun State, told InfomediaNG that she was unable to use the ATM because, “I was yet to enroll for the BVN. I was forced to enter the bank hall to enroll before I later gained access my account using the ATM.”

This means the implementation on POS and ATM will be simple. You may not be able to use both services if you haven’t got your BVN.

Where do I lodge biometrics complaint if any arises?

Just like your regular account number complaint, you should contact your bank where your account is domiciled.

During Facial capture can a customer leave his/her glasses on?

No, a customer cannot leave his/her glasses on during facial capture.

Is there any provision for individuals who cannot write or are illiterates to fill the enrolment form?

Yes, a customer service officer is always available in any bank to assist customer on any perceived difficult task. In filling the enrolment form, call on the customer service office to help you out.

And if you can’t understand this explanation well enough, Google Translate is available at the top of this article which can translate this to your preferred language.

Is there a deadline for the enrolment?

No, enrollment for BVN is a continuous process.

Can minors be Enrolled?

It is meant for adults.

BVN enrolment for Corporate Accounts

According to the Central Bank of Nigeria,“Individuals who are signatories to corporate accounts will enrol and their BVNs would be linked to the corporate account by the Banks.”

And for joint accounts, “All signatories of the accounts shall be linked.”

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