Her origins are unknown. She originally supported Zeno while the young emperor Leo II was still alive, but after Leo II's death in 474 she turned against her son-in-law. She conspired against him with her lover Patricius, her brother Basiliscus, the Isaurian general Illus, and general Theodoric Strabo, forcing Zeno to flee Constantinople in 475. Basiliscus then briefly became the rival emperor, until 476 when Verina reconciled with Zeno.
Verina then conspired against Illus, who discovered the plot, and with Zeno's consent had her imprisoned. This led to another conspiracy led by Verina's son Marcian (a grandson of the emperor Marcian), but Marcian was defeated and exiled.
In 483 Zeno asked Illus to release Verina, but by now Illus was opposed to Zeno's Monophysite sympathies. Illus allied with Verina and declared a general named Leontius emperor, but Zeno defeated them as well. Illus and Verina fled to Isauria, where Verina died in 484.