Safe & Convenient Mobile Banking Tips
Convenience is the driving factor in the rise of mobile banking. But, as mobile devices, like smart phones and tablets, become more popular, hackers are finding savvy ways to steal information. As you start to use mobile banking, remember to avoid storing sensitive information like passwords and social security numbers on your mobile device. In addition, consider the following tips to keep your mobile device secure:
- Passwords: Configure a password to gain access to and use your mobile device. Change it periodically.
- Set an idle-timeout that will automatically lock the phone when not in use. Log off when you finish using Mobile Banking.
- About Apps: Keep all software up to date, including the operating system and installed “apps.” Download mobile apps from reputable sources only. Use an app rather than a browser for banking, when possible, to decrease the risk for phishing, website spoofing, and man-in-the-middle attacks.
- Stay current: Protect your phone from viruses and malware just like you do for your computer by installing mobile security software. Delete text messages from the bank when you are through with them. If you do not need a certain function, be sure it is turned off. This includes the “discoverable” feature on your device, except when it is actually being used to pair to another device.
- Keep it private: Never disclose via text message, phone call or e-mail your personal or financial information, including account numbers, passwords, social security number or birth date. Be cautious when using public hotspots. Carefully consider your WiFi and Bluetooth connection settings, even at a trusted retailer, as fraudsters can spoof (imitate) the name of reputable hotspots. If you use a hot spot or public Wireless Local Area Network for Mobile Banking, you risk having your banking credentials stolen. Be aware of your surroundings. Don’t type any sensitive information if others around you can see it.
- Know who you’re working with: QR codes (quick response codes) are two-dimensional barcodes that can be scanned with a mobile device to provide easy access to online information. Much like links in e-mail, QR codes can be used by fraudsters to send you to websites that may request your personal and financial information or could corrupt your mobile device. Treat QR codes with the same suspicion as you would any URL or link you find in an e-mail. Use caution when deciding which QR codes to scan, as some may have been tampered with if placed in a public place. Use a QR code scanner from a reputable source that will check links for malicious content before loading them in your browser. This capability can be found in the app description before downloading.
- Keep in touch with your bank: If you lose your mobile device, remove it from Mobile Banking by logging in to Online Banking. Go to Options, Mobile Banking Profile, Manage Devices. If you change your phone number or lose your mobile device, let your financial institution know right away. Monitor your accounts regularly and report suspicious activity to your financial institution immediately.