A recent report from Juniper Research has estimated that 590 million users use their mobile devices for online banking. Given the huge number of individuals using their phones and other devices for banking, it's more important than ever to make sure you're banking securely – and that means everywhere.
Gone are the days of paper shredders and simply keeping your checkbook closely guarded – today, the digital world demands passwords and security codes and even then, hackers and schemes sometimes get through to your online financial information. So take a moment to ask yourself the following questions to ensure your information is safe and secure when and where it matters most.
- Are my devices secure? – First and foremost, to protect your identity and financial information, evaluate whether your computers and mobile devices are secure. Install and regularly update anti-virus software, use only networks you know are secure when logging into your accounts, maintain important emails regarding your finances, and institute passwords on all of your mobile devices.
- Are my accounts protected? – Passwords have become a part of our everyday lives as we increasingly utilize the internet throughout the day. When creating a password for your online accounts, make sure you use a mix of letters, numbers, and case-sensitive characters, don't use the same password for multiple accounts, and be sure to change your passwords regularly.
- Am I regularly monitoring my online finances? - Many people adopt a "set it and forget it" attitude when it comes to online financial accounts – avoid this lazy attitude at all costs. Regularly monitor your accounts and always take a careful look at the transactions that transpire. If you spot anything out of the ordinary, contact your financial institution immediately to remedy a potential hack early.
Online banking is certainly one way to make life easier in our fast-paced world. Don't adopt the "set it and forget it attitude" that so many individuals realize is the wrong one to take after their online accounts have been hacked – be proactive and regularly take a few moments to make sure your online finances are secure and protected.