Is New Banking Technology Safer Than in the Past?
Yes, banking technology today is much safer than it was in the past. New banking technology, like mobile applications and digital access, continues to make people's lives easier, but they're not without risks. Thankfully, there have been many improvements in the safety of banking technology, including:
- Multi-factor authentication
- Security key authentication
- Face ID to verify identity
- Password visibility protection (blurring)
- Follow-up communications whenever your account is accessed
It's still important to practice online safety, especially concerning your financial information and logins, so you do not fall prey to scams or phishing attempts online.
Is It Safe to Use a Mobile Banking App?
Yes, it is safe to use mobile banking apps. There are industry-standard security measures that are implemented across multiple banking platforms, including the individual app for the bank or credit union you use.
These may include:
- Multi-factor authentication
- Automatic logout
- Biometric authentication
This helps protect members from having their data accessed online, but there are still ways that you can protect yourself if you are unsure of the security of your information.
What Are the Dangers of Online Banking?
Some online banking security issues are present regardless of the platform you’re using to access your accounts. A common threat facing all online banking customers are phishing scams. Phishing scams can look like this:
- Fake emails attempting to get customers to log in to their account from a link (usually sent through text message or email)
- Communication that impersonates your banking brand (call from someone claiming to represent your bank or credit union)
- Fake texts disguised as account updates attempting to solicit customers for information
Additionally, malware that may be on devices or accidentally downloaded can give hackers access to passwords and sensitive information like financial logins from your mobile device.
If your information gets stolen or you have a financial account that gets hacked, you may be at risk of having funds in your account drained or sent to third parties.
Tips For Safe Online Banking
While technology has improved to make mobile and online banking safer, you should still practice safe online banking habits to protect yourself from threats.
- Use Official Banking Apps: Most banks have an official app so that you can access your account online safely and securely. These are equipped with standard security software and will auto log you out to prevent your information from being shared. It is better to use a banking app than to log in to the bank’s website through a browser. This is especially true if you are on a mobile device where other apps or software may have access to your passwords.
- Avoid Using Public Wi-Fi to Log Into Mobile Banking Apps: Public Wi-Fi networks are generally unsecured, which means that anything that you look up can be seen by the owner of the network. This includes any login information or sensitive content that you look at online. Avoid logging into your mobile banking apps on public Wi-Fi; using your data or service plan is a much safer option.
- Avoid Jailbroken Devices: Jailbroken devices may be used to give a user additional control over their device, but they often come with the risk of malware being installed on your phone. If you have a jailbroken device, avoid logging into your financial accounts or mobile banking apps on it.
- Change Passwords Regularly: Change your password regularly and avoid using variations of the same password to ensure that it is not easily guessable or able to be hacked.
- Verify Communication Credentials: Phishing scams like fake emails and texts may appear to come from the official banking platform, but you should verify that they are legitimate before taking any action. If you notice grammar mistakes, a slightly wrong email addresses (like including an extra letter or missing a letter) attempting to pose as your banking institution, assume that they are a threat and do not respond.
Bank Safely With OnPath Federal Credit Union
At OnPath FCU, your financial safety and security are our top priority. We offer mobile and online banking services to all of our members because we understand that convenience is important when it comes to serving our community.
You can have 24/7 access to your account with our digital banking app, where you can manage your money and connect with a customer service agent at any time. Download the app today.