How to Retrieve Your BVN Details: A Step-by-Step Guide


Your bank verification number (BVN) is a unique, 11-digit number assigned to you by Nigerian banks.

It is used to identify and verify your identity across all banks in Nigeria.

Knowing your correct BVN details is important for carrying out certain financial transactions, like opening new bank accounts, applying for loans, transferring funds between banks, and more.

Here is a comprehensive guide to the various methods you can use to retrieve and confirm your BVN details quickly and easily:

How to Retrieve Your BVN Details

Overview of BVN

First, let’s understand what exactly BVN is:

  • BVN stands for Bank Verification Number.
  • It is an 11-digit number randomly generated and uniquely assigned to each bank customer in Nigeria.
  • The BVN system was introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in 2014.
  • The aim was to provide a centralized biometric identification system for bank customers across Nigeria.
  • It uses biometric information, like fingerprints and facial images, to link customers’ information across multiple banks.
  • Your BVN remains unchanged throughout your lifetime and does not expire. It is linked to your identity permanently.
  • BVN aims to tackle issues like identity theft, duplicate customer records, fraudulent bank transactions, etc.
  • All bank account holders in Nigeria are required to obtain a BVN by CBN mandate.
  • Your BVN contains your biodata and biometric data, which helps provide irrefutable identity confirmation.

So in summary, your BVN is your unique identity across the Nigerian banking system, offering centralized KYC (Know Your Customer) verification.

Now let’s look at how to retrieve your all-important BVN details quickly when required.

Method 1: BVN Portal

The most direct method to retrieve your BVN is to use the official BVN enrollment portal provided by NIBSS (Nigeria Interbank Settlement System).

Follow these simple steps:

Step 1: Visit the NIBSS BVN Portal

Step 2: Enter Your BVN

  • On the BVN validation portal, enter your 11-digit BVN number.
  • Make sure to enter the correct BVN linked to your identity.
  • If you don’t remember your BVN, you can use any of the other methods in this guide to retrieve it first.

Step 3: Input Your Date of Birth

  • Enter your date of birth exactly as provided during your BVN enrollment.
  • Enter in DD/MM/YYYY format e.g. 29/11/1990.
  • Your full date of birth is required for verification before retrieving BVN details.

Step 4: Make Payment of N25

  • To complete the validation process, you need to pay a fee of N25.
  • Payment can be made directly on the portal using your ATM card.
  • This minimal fee verifies your request and activates the BVN retrieval process.

Step 5: Get Your BVN Details

  • Once payment is successful, your full BVN information will be displayed on your dashboard.
  • Your BVN profile containing your complete details like:
    • BVN number
    • Full legal name
    • Phone number
    • Date of birth
    • Residential address
    • Face photograph
    • Fingerprints
    • Name of linked bank
    • Account number
    • And more
  • Double-check that all the information is accurate.
  • You can print or download your BVN details from this portal for future reference.

The BVN portal provides the most comprehensive method to retrieve your full BVN profile instantly with minimal hassle.

Method 2: Use USSD Code

You can also use USSD codes to instantly retrieve your BVN via your mobile phone.

Simply dial 5650# to get your BVN number directly on your phone.

Follow these steps:

Step 1: Dial 5650#

  • Dial 5650# on your mobile number linked with your BVN.
  • This USSD code works on all major mobile networks in Nigeria.

Step 2: Follow the Prompts

  • After dialing, follow the instructions and continue through the prompts.
  • You may need to enter your registered phone number or date of birth for identity confirmation.

Step 3: Get SMS with BVN

  • You will receive an SMS on your phone containing your 11-digit BVN number.
  • Note that using USSD will only show your BVN and no additional details.
  • But it offers quick and convenient access in just a few simple steps.

Step 4: Pay the N20 Fee

  • A fee of N20 is chargeable for the BVN retrieval via this USSD service.
  • The fee will be deducted automatically from your linked phone airtime balance.

While USSD may not show comprehensive details, it is fast and avoids internet requirements. So if you just need instant confirmation of your BVN number, use the simple 5650# option.

Method 3: Bank Mobile Apps and Websites

Nowadays, most banks in Nigeria allow you to retrieve your BVN details through their internet banking portals or mobile apps.

Follow these instructions based on your bank:

Step 1: Login to Your Bank’s Online Platform

  • First, login to your bank’s internet banking website or mobile app using your credentials.
  • Options include websites like Zenith Bank’s Internet Banking at
  • You can also use mobile apps like Access Bank’s Mobile Banking App.

Step 2: Navigate to BVN Section

  • Once logged in, find the appropriate menu or section to access your BVN details within the platform.
  • For example, GTBank’s mobile app has a dedicated BVN section. Zenith Bank provides it under the Profile section.
  • The process varies depending on the bank, so locate the relevant link.

Step 3: Enter Details and Verify Identity

  • You may need to enter identifying details like BVN number or date of birth for verification.
  • Some banks may also require extra authentication via OTP or security questions to confirm identity.

Step 4: View Your BVN Information

  • After identity confirmation, your BVN details will be displayed on the platform.
  • Information shown can include your BVN number, name, phone number, date of birth etc.
  • Exact details provided may vary between different banks.

Banking online platforms offer a convenient option to retrieve your BVN without visiting a branch. Ensure the platform is your official bank’s website and double check the URL.

Method 4: Visit Your Bank Branch

For those who don’t use internet banking or prefer a more personal approach, you can simply visit your bank branch.

Here’s how:

Step 1: Bring Valid ID

  • Visit any branch of the bank where you first obtained your BVN.
  • Carry a valid government-issued ID card like national ID, driver’s license or voter’s ID.

Step 2: Request BVN Retrieval

  • At the branch, request to retrieve your BVN details and inform them of your account details.
  • Explain that you need to confirm your BVN information.

Step 3: Staff Assisted Verification

  • The bank staff will guide you through their verification process to confirm your identity.
  • This may require answering questions or scanning fingerprints depending on bank protocol.

Step 4: Collect your BVN

  • Once verified, the staff can print or share your BVN information with you directly at the branch.
  • Thank the staff for their time and assistance.

Visiting a bank branch still remains a solid option to retrieve your BVN with the help of bank personnel. But branch visits can be time consuming compared to digital options.

Other Ways to Retrieve Your BVN

Aside from the main methods outlined already, here are a couple other ways you can obtain your BVN details:

  • SMS Notification – Some banks automatically send periodic SMS notifications containing your BVN to your registered mobile number. Check your past inbox for any messages with your BVN.
  • ATM – Select bank ATMs display your BVN number on the transaction receipt after completing a normal cash withdrawal or check balance transaction.
  • Email – Check your email inbox for any past communication from your bank mentioning your BVN as part of account updates or promotional messages.
  • Physical Mail – Your BVN information is usually included in physical bank account statements or letters periodically sent to your mailing address.

So in summary, the main options are the BVN portal, USSD, bank platforms, bank branch visit, plus other ancillary channels like SMS, ATM, email and mailed letters.

Choose the one that best suits your preferences and access to get your BVN swiftly.

BVN Retrieval Reminders & Security Tips

Here are some important security reminders when retrieving your BVN:

  • Only use the official NIBSS portal for BVN validation – Avoid any other website offering BVN services as they could be unsafe.
  • Do not share your BVN openly with anyone. Treat it as highly confidential information.
  • If receiving BVN via SMS, ensure the sender is your bank and not an unknown third-party.
  • When using bank platforms, only enter your login details on the official bank website or app. Avoid phishing sites.
  • If unsure about any BVN communication received, call your bank to confirm it is legitimate.
  • Look out for possible scams or calls requesting your BVN. Never share your BVN unless you initiated the request via a trusted channel.
  • Monitor your account activity closely if you shared your BVN anywhere. Report unauthorized transactions immediately.

Exercising caution is advisable when dealing with sensitive information like your BVN. Follow security best practices to stay protected.

How to Retrieve Your BVN Details


Your unique BVN number helps solidify your identity across the Nigerian banking system. Retrieving it quickly when required enables you to smoothly carry out key financial transactions.

We have covered the major methods for fast and simple BVN retrieval – via the NIBSS portal, USSD code, your bank’s online platforms or physically visiting a bank branch.

Each option has its pros and cons. Identify the best method that suits your preferences and circumstances.

Now that you know how to retrieve your BVN, you can have it handy when needed for account opening, transfers, loan applications and more. Treat it as an important personal identifier and keep the details secure.

Remember to follow the safety tips outlined to avoid any risks of fraud or identity theft associated with your sensitive BVN information.


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