Electronic fund transfer has gained enough popularity with our growing economy followed by demonetisation. The popularity stems from the fact that such a transfer is extremely convenient and can be done instantly. When it comes to domestic transactions, IFSC Code is the key bit of information that facilitates a hassle-free transfer. However, only a few of us know what an IFSC Code is or how to search IFSC Code. This article is a complete guide for all the beginners who want to know about IFSC code and how it helps in fund transfer and so on.

Breaking Down IFSC Code

Indian Financial System Code, abbreviated as IFSC Code, is an 11-digit alpha-numeric code allotted by the Reserve Bank of India. IFSC Codes are used in identifying a particular bank and branch to initiate online fund transfer such as NEFT, RTGS, IMPS etc. The first four digits indicate the bank. The fifth character is always ‘Zero’, which is for future use. The remaining six digits indicate the branch code or the location of the bank.

 IFSC Code of a particular bank differs from branch to branch. For instance, IFSC Code for SBI Janakpuri branch, New Delhi is SBIN0070837, while SBI South Extn. branch code is SBIN0013913. In order to initiate fund transfer between two branches, you must know the IFSC Code of the receiver bank along with the account number of the recipient.  You can consider the below image to understand the structure of an IFSC Code:

How to Search IFSC Code?

You can easily search for your IFSC Code. For instance, if you own an account with State Bank of India (SBI) then you can find IFSC code SBI printed on your chequebook as well as on the front page of your bank passbook. In case you don’t have a chequebook or passbook, you can visit Policybazaar.com to find the IFSC Code of a particular bank branch.  For instance, if you want to know the Canara Bank IFSC Code of a particular branch of Canara Bank, just Google it, go to the policybazaar page and navigate to ‘find IFSC code’ tab. Select your bank from drop-down menu followed by state, district and branch and finally get the IFSC Code of the desired branch instantly.

Why is IFSC Code Important?

The importance of IFSC Code in banking transactions cannot be overlooked:

  • IFSC Code plays an important role when it comes to transferring money electronically. This is a must-have requirement for all online banking transactions. It is helpful in streamlining all the payments within the different bank branches across the country.
  • RBI keeps all the records related to bank transactions through IFSC Codes. It helps RBI to identify, monitor and authenticate fund exchanges during banking transactions.
  • While doing NEFT, RTGS or IMPS transfer, IFSC Code gives an accurate idea of the bank branch where the account of the receiver is.
  • One cannot initiate a fund transfer without an IFSC Code. Moreover, it is environment-friendly as no paperwork is required and everything is done online.
  • While fund transfer with IFSC Codes has become efficient, it contributes to the country’s growth by facilitating a fast business process.
  • Payments for travel and bill/bookings can also be done by using IFSC Codes.

IFSC Code-Some Facts to Consider

When you use something on regular basis, you tend to take it for granted. Same goes for IFSC Code. Therefore, you must know some often-missed or unknown facts about IFSC Code. Let’s have a look here:

IFSC Code is Allocated by the RBI

You may have a misconception that IFSC Codes are created by the banks themselves. The fact is, the complete authority belongs to the Reserve Bank of India. RBI is empowered with allocating and generating IFSC codes for different banks across the country. RBI also maintains a record of IFSC Codes for various banks branches in order to make online fund transfer process smooth. One can search IFSC Code of any bank by visiting the official website of RBI. The link given in the footer menu of the website will take you to a page where you can choose your preferred bank from the given drop-down menu. Then, type the branch name to get the IFSC Code of a particular branch within India.

Inimitability

IFSC Code of every bank is unique. It is similar to train PNR number, which is used for reservations to ensure that no two passengers book the same seat on a train. These codes are also generated on the basis of the concept of ensuring fast and hassle-free electronic fund transfer. Even RTGS and NEFT transfers are done based on the account number and IFSC code only.

RBI has the Sole Authority over IFSC Code

When it comes to generate, alter, allot or cancel IFSC Code, Reserve Bank of India has complete authority. Nevertheless, it’s not a usual practice for RBI to change IFSC code but this central bank does retain the authority to make any changes regarding this. When the IFSC Code for any bank branch is changed, the new code can be easily availed from the bank. The account holders have to ask for a new chequebook with the new IFSC code printed on it.

Prone to Errors

Possibilities are there that you may make a mistake and enter the wrong IFSC Code while transferring the money to another account. Make sure that you double-check the IFSC Code before clicking on the ‘submit’ button. With a wrong IFSC Code, the transaction wouldn’t be processed. Mostly, in such cases, the money is reverted to the sender’s account. It is very rare that a wrong account gets credited. Although there are ways to recover the money, the process takes some time.

In a Nutshell!

Thus, if you want to transfer money without any hassle, IFSC Code can be a great choice. It takes care of your money by safely crediting the funds to the beneficiary’s account. Therefore, the next time you initiate a fund transfer online, double check the IFSC Code for sure.