Hear me out here…

The use of the word “bank card” gives me the ick - I much prefer to hear “debit card” as it’s usually appropriate or of course “credit card” when that applies.

I also hate the use of “long card number” preferring debit or credit card number.

I’m a 20 something so could I have skipped the era of the “icky” terms being commonplace.

Could I be going mad? What are your thoughts…


Oh and another one - when people called credit card bills “visa bills”!

I prefer debit/credit card but other terms don’t bother me a great deal.

I think ‘long card number’ started when merchants were taking details over the phone from people who might have been confused with the other digits on your typical card.


Yup - people rarely know the difference between an account number and a debit card number. It’s a good development that the account numbers are disappearing off many cards.

You wouldn’t believe the amount of people I’ve seen send photos of debit cards to prove account details…

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Disagree strongly! Especially when you have 4 accounts with the same bank, it’s very handy indeed!


Surely a locked note with Face ID or the like does the trick here? Copy paste done. Or even check the app??

Or do you mean when you go to pay for something? :joy:

Account numbers on the card allow for greater loss of data when losing a card as well imo - esp given the account number will remain constant whilst the card number will be replaced

Not all apps even show all your debit cards, leave alone make it clear which one belongs to which account!

Yes - if for example I need to pay some cash in to a specific account.

True but an account number/sort code alone is not a particularly useful piece of information to a fraudster. These details are on every cheque everyone’s ever written so they were never designed to be ‘secret’.

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What about when Clarkson put his account and sort code in an editorial saying it bears no risk - only to have £500 go out to charity by direct debit from a prankster. Or have these things been tightened up?

I see what you mean about the multiple cards - fortunately it doesn’t affect me as I have no identical cards!

Yes, you can grief somebody by committing fraud, but you can’t personally gain from it (unless you became a payee enrolled in the Direct Debit scheme, in which case the entire thing would be very traceable). In any case, the Direct Debit Guarantee has the payer comprehensively covered.

If there was an angle here we would see it far more often than one case with one mouthy journalist.

True - still, for whatever reason I’m happier having the permanent account details recorded digitally.

I have account numbers on my Triodos and Coop cards - they tend to stay in the draw.

I see your point about cheques - although I haven’t used any of my cheque books afaik :joy:

You’d just cancel the direct debit… and inform your bank that someone has tried to register one without your consent

Pretty sure they can change them for you

People are beyond stupid when it comes to this, you have to be as verbose as possible

Even today you can’t see set up DDs with some providers

They’re not disappearing off any cards that I know of, except Chase, they’re just moving to the back instead of the front.

The “long number” and the “card number” haven’t always been the same thing. Back in the days when Switch debit cards existed, my First Direct Switch debit card had both. It had a long number across the middle, which was just 6759 followed by my sort code and account number, but along the bottom of the card there was another number, nine digits I think, which said “card number” below it. If you search Google images for “First Direct Switch card” you’ll see what I mean. I presume it was the same with other banks that issued Switch cards.

In those days you had to ask customers for the “long number across the middle” otherwise you might get the shorter number from the bottom, which was no use for making payments. If I remember correctly, the shorter number was for cheque guarantee purposes.

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Very interesting! I knew there must be something…

R.e numbers on cards being removed I meant the account number - NatWest removed them from their cards for instance

I don’t think NatWest debit cards have ever shown the account number, have they? I haven’t had a NatWest account for years but as I remember it, the debit card only had the sort code on it, there wasn’t an account number.


Could have sworn they were there when they still had embossed numbers

Newp, definitely not since 2001 at least (when I got my first Solo card). Always had a sort code but no account number.

Edit - turns out the first ones I had did, but it was removed in the mid-00s.

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No idea what I’m thinking of then :joy:

The sort code was removed in the most recent portrait redesign. Perhaps that.

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