The majority of us do it, bank with our phones, but it can open you up for fraudulent activity. Banking with a mobile device has become common place – it’s quick, simple and efficient, but it’s also easier for hackers to steal your information and make purchases using your funds.
With your mobile device you can manage your checking accounts, transfer funds to other banks and even pay for purchases at your favorite store. However, increased exposure has some experts worried, warning consumers to follow precaution when banking with mobile.
Here’s a list of things to watch out for when banking with your mobile device:
Don’t go public
Going public with most things signifies achievement, but don’t go public when banking with your mobile device. We all want to restrict data usage and take advantage of public Wi-Fi networks, but they pose a significant risk when mobile banking. “Mobile banking apps are connected to wireless networks, and these networks are inherently insecure as they broadcast their messages into the open air,” Ron Vetter, co-founder of the technology company Mobile Education LLC told the U.S. News.
To avoid this danger change your Wi-Fi settings when entering public places. Many of us have our Wi-Fi settings set to automatically connect to available Wi-Fi networks, which must be switched off if banking in spaces like coffee shops, airports and other public environments. There’s no way to control who’s accessing the network and who may be looking to steal your banking information.
Auto-save is a great convenience. It allows you to make purchases and log in to portals without having to type all your information each time. It’s also one of the best ways to open yourself up for fraud. Anyone who has access to your phone can access your banking information and commit bank fraud. That applies to strangers who come across your phone, but also friends and family members who have regular access.
Which brings us to our next tip – keep your phone protected by adding a password or better yet your finger print. Many mobile users for-go password protection for convenience. It can be annoying to have to log into a device each time you want to access it, but that annoyance can prevent someone from making purchases with your credit or banking account. Many phones now offer finger print protection, which prevents anyone but you from accessing your device and the information stored on it.
Beware of apps
Unfortunately Google and Apple don’t have the capability to vet each app owner before offering their app to the public. By allowing apps to access your information you’re opening yourself up for hacking. There’s no way to control how an app user chooses to use your information once accessed. If using an app to manage your money choose those from established financial institutions, preferably those you bank with currently.
Banking with your mobile device is fast and convenient. When used properly and with the right safety precautions it provides consumers with a better way to bank.
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