Even though online banking may seem risky, it is absolutely safe to conduct all of your banking online every day. Millions of people do their banking online and feel safe doing so. Do you think that online banking is safe? Let’s explore some of the ways to keep online banking safe and your sensitive information secure.
Thieves can access your account by tricking you into thinking that you’re logging into your account when you’re not. This is called phishing. So how do they do it? They simply send you an email that instructs you to log into your online account to change your information or verify a purchase through a link in the email. Avoid clicking on this link in every instance. Always access your online banking through a bookmark created by you or by typing in the URL in your browser.
Ignore any and all requests that ask you to send your personal information via email. Usernames, passwords, PIN numbers, account information and credit card numbers can easily be read and intercepted by a third party since email is usually unencrypted. This information is also stored on servers, which can become compromised and read by thieves.
Ensure that all of the web pages that you visit are secure when you are online banking. You will know that a web page is encrypted when you see a small padlock symbol appear in the bottom right corner of the window or beside the address bar and URL at the top of the web page. If this symbol does not appear, assume that the web page is not secure. Avoid entering your username and password and log off immediately.
Be aware of where you log into your bank online. At work, your computer may have key loggers installed on it or your company may be using other methods to monitor your actions and access your login information while you’re online. Since wireless networks can be intercepted and read by a third party, ensure that the wireless network is secure using WPA. Avoid logging into your account from your friend’s computer or an unfamiliar computer. Usernames and passwords can be stored and used to access your personal information.
Use a strong password for logging into your bank online. Avoid using a password that thieves can guess easily, such as your pet’s name or a 1234 combination. Your banking password should contain a mixture of numbers, special characters, and capitalization. In other words, your password should be difficult for thieves to guess.
Ensure that you install virus software on your personal computer to keep it protected from potential thieves. A thief can infect your computer and install a key logger that keeps track of each keystroke that you enter on your computer. Your username, password and other confidential information could be captured.
Online banking is safe. All you need to do is take the right precautions to ensure that you keep your account information secure every time you log into your bank. If you are aware of the potential dangers, you will be able to do your online banking safely and securely.