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What is an account number and sort code?

All UK current accounts have an account number and sort code – to help banks find the correct account for money transfers. While the numbers may look random, they actually contain information that identifies you.

What is an account number?

An account number is a unique string of numbers that identify your bank account.

Your bank account number is a personal identifier and helps banks ensure transactions are directed to the correct customer account. If you have multiple bank accounts, each account will have a different account number.

How do I find my account number?

You can find your bank account number on your bank statements or through your online and mobile banking accounts. In some cases, your account number is printed at the bottom of your cheques.

If you have a current account, you can also find your account number on your debit card. It may be printed on either the front or back of the card, and will typically be labelled as ‘Account Number’ or ‘Account No.’

How long is an account number?

Your bank account number is 8-digits long.

What is a sort code?

A sort code is a 6-digit number identifying the bank or bank branch holding your account. Sort codes help route transactions, ensuring funds are directed to the correct account within a bank.

Where is the sort code on a card?

Your sort code is typically printed on the back of your debit card, though some cards may have it displayed on the front. It will usually be labelled as ‘Sort Code’, so you’ll be able to find it.

You won’t have a sort code if you have a credit card.

If you don’t have your card, you can also find your sort code on bank statements, cheques or through your online and mobile banking accounts. Alternatively, you can contact your bank.

Is it safe to give your sort code and account number?

When used together, your sort code and account number allow people and businesses to transfer money into your account. Sharing your sort code and account number is generally safe since the information is required for you to receive payments.

Some countries, such as those within the European Union, use the International Bank Account Number (IBAN) and Business Identifier Code (BIC). Your IBAN is your account number written in a standard global format, while your BIC is a code used to identify your bank in global transactions. Much like your sort code and account number, these are generally safe to provide.

However, you should only provide this banking information to trusted individuals and organisations. Be aware of potential scams designed to obtain your bank details fraudulently.

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