Mobile banking apps can save time as you won’t need to go to the bank to make a deposit. However, you might have some questions about the security of banking on your phone. According to a study from the U.S. Federal Reserve, 24 percent of respondents felt somewhat unsafe about their personal information when using mobile banking, while 18 percent felt very unsafe. Here are a few suggestions to ensure that your information is safe while using mobile banking apps.
Be Careful of Texts Regarding Your Banking
If you receive a text message about a low-balance alert, think before you click! Many times, scammers will send this to phish through your personal information. Check your bank’s app to see if they offer text alerts if you do receive one. Consider enabling notifications from the app itself if available for any changes to your account. It’s a good idea, however, to receive text alerts regarding any changes to your balance so you can be aware of any suspicious charges.
Never Log in through Public Wi-Fi
If you’re staying in a hotel, drinking coffee at a café, or checking your phone while waiting for a flight, it’s a good idea to avoid checking your banking apps. According to a report from Norton Anti-Virus, 87 percent of respondents said they have potentially put their information at risk while using public Wi-Fi. Public Wi-Fi networks can contain malware and some criminals may be able to eavesdrop into your bank records through special software and devices. It’s best to limit checking your accounts to when you’re on Wi-Fi at home or work.
Make Sure You’re Using the Most Updated Versions
Check your phone right now to see if there is an update available. While most updates are to address bugs and issues within the apps, they sometimes contain important security updates. It’s best to update your app whenever possible.
Be Careful with Linking Certain Apps
Numerous apps like Venmo, Acorns, Google Wallet, and Apple Pay can connect directly to your bank accounts. Some apps (Venmo and PayPal in particular) are not FDIC insured. This means that any money you have there is not insured. If you do decide to use an app similar to Venmo, ensure that any money you earn is transferred over to your bank immediately.