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What is Strong Customer Authentication (SCA)?

Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) provides extra layers of security when you use your card online.

When a payment requires SCA we use two types of authentication out of three possible options - also known as two-factor authentication. These are:

  • something you know (e.g. Security number)
  • something you have (e.g. Card or phone)
  • something you are (e.g. fingerprint or face recognition).

The rules for when SCA is required means that we need to make more frequent checks when you use your card online.

All companies that accept online card payments will be making changes to allow these checks, though not all companies will make these updates at the same time. This means that if your card payment is declined, the retailer may not have made all the necessary changes, and so you may need to check if they offer an alternative payment method.

How we’ll ask you to make these checks:
If your payment requires SCA then in some circumstances we may perform checks using information we have available, or, we may send a One Time Passcode (OTP) to your registered mobile phone number.

Please make sure that your mobile number is up to date and that you have your mobile phone to hand when making payments online.

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