The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in partnership with the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) introduced the Bank Verification Number (BVN) in 2014.
The BVN was launched to help strengthen the identification of customers, limit access to sensitive information and prevent fraud on user accounts in the Banking system. Years after, BVN is still relevant and vital in the banking and Fintech space.
What is a BVN?
Your BVN is an 11-digit number that is used to verify your identity across Nigerian banks. You cannot operate a Nigerian bank account without it as it is required for many transactions.
How to register for your BVN
Registering for your BVN is straightforward. You can easily walk into a bank to get it done and it typically requires the following steps:
- Visit a bank with your valid ID card
- Request for a BVN enrollment form and fill it with your accurate information
- Provide your biometric information (your photograph and thump print)
- Get your ticket ID and wait for your BVN to be sent to you as a text message after a few days
Why do Cowrywise and other fintech apps require your BVN?
As earlier mentioned, BVNs were introduced by banks to uniquely identify and verify users across the banking industry.
As a savings and investment app that allows users link their banks accounts for seamless and frequent transactions, it is crucial that we put strong systems in place to ensure your funds are safe. Thankfully, your BVN is part of that system.
For example, on Cowrywise, users cannot withdraw to a third party account. You can only withdraw money to a bank account with your verified BVN, this means that no one can withdraw your funds on your behalf.
When it comes to providing your BVN on your Cowrywise account, there is no need to worry about what it is being used for. This is because the safety of your fund is our top priority.
Note: Cowrywise requires your BVN only to access your name and ensure it tallies with the full name you provided on your Cowrywise profile. This means that it is simply for ‘know your customer’ (KYC) purposes as we do not have access to any sensitive information.
Benefits of adding your BVN to your Cowrywise account
- Easily carry out transactions from your bank to your Cowrywise account and vice versa.
- Enjoy automated savings and investments from your linked bank accounts.
- Strengthen your account security and limit unauthorized access.
How not to use a BVN on Cowrywise (and on other apps)
Every BVN is unique to an individual. That’s why you should never use another person’s BVN on your account, even if they’re a relative. Our system will pick it up and you may get flagged and temporarily lose access to your account.
What other ways does Cowrywise secure your account?
Trust is our currency and we are committed to the security of your money and the protection of your account. We do this in a number of ways.
We are PCI-DSS compliant to ensure the security of your data electronically. You may also set up 2FA for key transactions on your account. 2FA serves as an extra layer of protection to ensure the security of your account beyond just a username and password
Cowrywise is a registered fund manager with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of Nigeria. All our activities are in full compliance with regulatory requirements to the ultimate protection of our clients.
Users’ financial assets are held with a licensed custodian, Zenith Nominees Limited. This is for utmost safekeeping and to prevent misappropriation, misuse, theft, and/or loss, and in accordance with applicable law.
All the investment options listed on Cowrywise are carefully screened and managed by professional fund managers. All the diverse mutual funds are registered with the SEC, with a standard third-party custodian structure.
Cowrywise helps users to set and achieve their financial goals. To save and invest seamlessly, you’ll need to add your BVN to your Cowrywise account as it is a vital requirement to use the app.