The IFSC code is mandatory for electronic fund transfer. It is a code that is assigned to most major bank branches in India. An example of an IFSC code is SBIN0016151.
  • First four characters: The first four characters are used to identify the bank. In the example above 'SBIN' is an identifier for "State Bank Of India - SBI".
  • Fifth character: The fifth character is always zero (0) and is reserved for future use.
  • Last six characters: The last 6 characters are used to identify the branch. '016151' is the 'NRI BRANCH, PANAJI' branch of "State Bank Of India - SBI".

Understanding the MICR code

The MICR code is an older code that was introduced in the early 1980's to simplify fund transfer via checks or Demand Drafts (DD). MICR stands for Magnetic Ink Character Recognition. It is a 9 digit numeric code that can be found on all checks and is printed using a special ink on the bottom of all checks and Demand Drafts (DD). It is possible to extract the information in the MICR code using a special check machine even if there is some writing or stamping on top of the MICR code. The MICR code can be used to determine the bank branch in a manner similar to the IFSC code. For instance, the MICR code of ICICI Bank Limited, T.Nagar branch, Chennai city, Tamil Nadu state is 600229010.
  • First three digits: The first three digits of a MICR code determines the city in which the bank account is held. Normally, it is the same as the pin-code of the city. For instance, the pin-code of places within Chennai is 600-xxx; the last three digits being numbers.
  • Next three digits: The next three digits of the MICR code is used to determine the bank. All ICICI Bank Limited branches in any city will have '229' as the middle three digits.
  • Last three digits: The last three digits of the MICR code is used to identify the bank branch. In the example above, '010' stands for the T.Nagar branch.

IFSC and MICR Code Search maintains a comprehensive database of all major banks in India with their IFSC and MICR codes. There are three ways to use our site:
  • Search with any of the bank branch details: You can search the site with the bank branch information in the search text-box at the top of the page to obtain the branch information.
  • Browse by bank name: You can browse our database sorted by bank name. Then select the state, followed by the city and district to locate a particular bank branch.
  • Browse by bank location (state and/or union territory): You can also browse all banks in a particular location. Enter the state (or union territory), followed by the city and district to view all bank branches in a particular location.

Advantages of electronic fund transfer

Electronic fund transfer is superior as compared to a conventional fund transfer by check.
  • The primary advantage of electronic fund transfer is speed. In most cases, an electronic fund transfer is executed and the funds are transferred on the same day. In some cases, the funds are transferred on the next working day. Fund transfer via a check can take a maximum of 14 days if the bank branches are located in remote locations. Even in the case of local intra-city fund transfer, banks can take a maximum of three working days for crediting the account with the funds.
  • A check can get lost in transit. If this happens, the check should be canceled and re-issued resulting in unnecessary hassles. Electronic fund transfer eliminates this problem entirely.
  • An electronic fund transfer is convenient and can be initiated from anywhere if you have access to internet banking. There is no need to deposit the check in the recipient's branch.

Types of electronic fund transfer

Electronic fund transfer is quick and avoids all the hassles inherent in a physical transfer of funds with a check. Once a request for an electronic fund transfer is placed, the execution of the instruction starts quickly. The information needed for an electronic fund transfer are the IFSC code of the recipient's bank branch and the name and account number of the recipient.

There are three major forms of electronic fund transfer – the NEFT (National Electronic Funds Transfer), the RTGS (Real Time Gross Settlement) and IMPS (IMmediate Payment Service) transactions.

  • NEFT: The NEFT is similar to an electronic check. The fund transfer in a NEFT transaction happens mostly on the same day a request is placed. If the cut-off time for a NEFT request has passed, the transfer happens on the next day.
  • RTGS: The RTGS is intended for high value transfers, where the funds are to be transferred instantaneously.
  • IMPS: The IMPS is a new electronic fund transfer option used for transferring funds 24-by-7 on all days, including Sundays and bank holidays.

Steps to perform a NEFT transaction online

Read our comprehensive FAQ about IFSC and MICR codes to see detailed examples on how to use these codes for online transactions.