Strong Customer Authentication

What is Strong Customer Authentication?

Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) provides extra security for online payments. This could be when you buy things online or make payments using Online Banking. 

When you're making online payments you may have already noticed changes. From time to time we may need to do some additional authentication with you before your payment can be made. On this page we explain how we'll ask you to make these checks.

When a payment requires SCA we use two types of authentication out of three possible options. This is 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).

What's changed?

The rules for when SCA is required means that UK banks now need to make checks more often when you use your card online.

All companies that accept online card payments will be making changes to allow these checks. Not all companies will make these updates at the same time. If your card payment is declined, the retailer may not have made all the necessary changes. If this happens you'll need to check if they offer an alternative payment method.

How we’ll ask you to make these checks

When a payment requires SCA we may perform checks using information we have available. In some cases we'll send you a One Time Passcode (OTP) to your registered mobile number or ask you to verify through our mobile app.

Please make sure that your mobile number is up to date. You can do this on your Online Banking or by calling us on 0330 678 2811 (or +44 1908 937 222 if calling from abroad).  We’re open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm, and Saturday 9am-5pm. It's best to have your mobile phone to hand when making payments online.