Online banking has completely transformed the way in which we handle our finances in the 21st century. Submitting and receiving payments from the comfort of our smart devices made money management a lot more convenient, but it also created opportunities for new threats. In this article, we will discuss the seven main prevention tips that pertain to the topic.
How to Increase Online Banking Safety
1. Set a Strong Password Periodically
The password you set for your online banking account is your first line of defense against malicious third parties trying to gain unlawful access to your data and finances. Due to this, users should come up with one that is as strong as possible. First and foremost, make the code long and varied. Use both lowercase and uppercase letters, as well as symbols and letters.
In addition to this, ensure that you never use common phrases, such as famous quotes, celebrity names, or brands. Although using your favorite line from a movie might seem like a good idea, pop culture references are way too easy to crack. Finally, never reuse a password for a secondary account. It might be hard to keep track of every single one, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Moreover, try changing your password regularly. You don’t have to do it on a weekly basis but ensure that you don’t keep the same one for more than a few months. In this way, attackers won’t be able to use past data to illegitimately access your profile.
2. Always Enable Two-Factor Authentication
Back in the day, our online accounts were protected by nothing more than an email address and a password. Fortunately, modern platforms now employ two-factor authentication, which is also known as dual factor authentication or two-step verification. It implies two different confirmation methods upon logging in, so that sensitive information is completely safeguarded.
Thus, you will need to provide more than just a password in order to log into your account. Answering a security question could be required as well, or you might be asked to reproduce a numeric code you received via text message on the phone number connected to your account. No matter what the case is, it is a great way to keep your money protected.
3. Never Share a Device with Someone
The device you are using to handle finances, be it a smartphone, a tablet, or a computer, needs to be yours and only yours. Sharing it with a family friend or significant other is bad news, and not because it opens up your sensitive data to them. Even when you trust the person fully, carelessness might still occur.
Just think about it. They are unknowingly handling delicate information that doesn’t concern them. Your device might be infected with a virus, thus opening up a gateway for malicious third parties. Or, it could be left unattended by your peer who does not know about the figures you store on it. Shield your account and keep all information confidential for the sake of your funds.
4. Avoid Connecting to Public Wi-Fi Networks
Connecting your smartphone or laptop to the public Wi-Fi network on the train or the ones in restaurants, bars, and cafés seems tempting. After all, who doesn’t want to save some money on their mobile data plan by using someone else’s Internet? However, if you plan on engaging in financial operations or transactions of any kind, it’s essential to refrain from doing so.
Modern Wi-Fi networks rely on WPA2 encryption, which is majorly flawed. A bug in the system behind it allows hackers to position themselves between the computer and the hotspot. Thus, you might think you are sending the information towards the latter, but in reality the former threats gain access to whatever sensitive data you put out there.
5. Turn Your Mobile Notifications On
Many mobile banking applications have a notification option that will inform you of any activity that takes place on your account. By turning this feature on, you will know whenever unauthorized transactions occur so that you can deploy immediate action. Call your bank immediately if that is the case and follow the according steps to retrieve losses and block funds.
6. Update Your Devices and Antivirus
Outdated systems mean weaker firewalls, as well as a lack of bug fixes being dispatched to your mobile device. This opens up a doorway for hackers to steal your confidential information and potentially gain access to your bank account as well. Thus, you should always keep your device’s operating system and antivirus up to date with the latest versions.
7. Check with Your Bank Regarding Policies
Before setting up your online banking app, always check with your institution of choice regarding its security policies. How does your bank handle consumer nonpublic information? What is its partner plan? Does it have a data-oriented disaster recovery strategy? It’s your right as a consumer to know these things in some detail, so don’t be afraid to ask.
The Bottom Line
The first step towards a secure account lies in a strong password that is changed regularly. Enable the two-factor verification and never share a device or connect to public Wi-Fi. Always check the notifications sent by the app and keep all systems up to date. Finally, when all else fails, don’t be afraid to call the bank. It is your right as its client.
Author Bio: Jonathan Kessey is a skilled Developer and writer with the main focus on the daily issues people occurs on the internet. His platform OnlineLoginGuides (http://onlineloginguides.com/) is an up and coming website that provides simple instructions for users to complete the sign-in procedure of a variety of online portals and online service providers.