Advancements in technology and the internet have made life much easier for consumers. Today, we can do shopping or buy groceries and tickets to airlines and concerts without even stepping out of the house. But perhaps nothing beats being able to do certain banking transactions practically anywhere and without having to endure the long lines.
Welcome to the wonderful world of mobile internet banking.
A form of online or internet banking that uses smartphones or tablets, mobile banking has seen a steady increase in users ever since it took off in 2007. Today, millions of people are regularly using the service. Checking account balance, reviewing recent transactions, and paying bills are just a few of its benefits. And financial institutions continue to find ways to make banking more convenient with just the use of a client’s mobile device, whether it be a smartphone or tablet.
In fact, every major bank today has its own mobile app that the public can download and install on their devices for free. This allows them to do a lot of banking transactions that previously would mean a trip to the bank’s nearest branch and a lot of time wasted waiting in line.
It has also made possible paperless transactions such as doing fund transfers and paying utility and insurance bills. And in some parts of the world, you can even buy credits for your prepaid mobile service.
But, like any service that goes through the internet, online banking (whether through mobile devices or desktop computers) can be open to security breaches if users do not do their due diligence. The most common method that scammers use is phishing.
What is phishing?
Criminals send you an email telling you that your account has been compromised and that you need to update your account or it will be deactivated indefinitely. A link is provided that if clicked, will take you to a website that may look exactly like your bank’s online site. You will then be asked for personal account details such as email passwords, bank account numbers, and credit card information. Once you do that, the scammer gains full access to your account and can do whatever he pleases.
How to combat phishing
1. Alarm bells should always sound when email messages or websites ask you for confidential information.
2. Never click on links or open attachments in messages from unfamiliar senders.
3. Check the email address of senders, especially if they are posing as your bank. Often, the address will look strange being used by such an institution.
4. Watch out for typos and grammatical errors.
By being vigilant, you would make your mobile internet banking as secure as can be, and you will continue to enjoy its many benefits.