Online banking is a growing trend in the modern world and does seem to proliferate exponentially each day. It brings about many services to the finger tips of an online banking customer and avoids the inconveniences such as being in a queue, filling out numerous forms, travelling…etc. Even though such advantages make it an attractive option, there are potential dangers for those who do not practice proper security measures in maintaining secure information.
What does an online banking customer have to protect?
Among the information which is essential to be kept secret, the login information would be the most vital along with the account details such as the account number, name of the account holder, residential address and the contact details. Allowing a third party to get hold of this information, particularly the login information would be detrimental and may lead to huge financial losses to the customer as well as to the financial institutions.
What are the instances in which such information would be leaked?
The information that was mentioned before can be leaked to a third party if they get hold of documents which contains the said information or else through electronic documents used to store such information and is not protected adequately.
Responding to email, text, an instant message which requests a person to provide account information including the login name, personal information as well as the passwords are never legitimate and is a known method of collecting user information by fraudsters.
At the same time, duplicate web sites which appear as legitimate banking sites will acquire the login information through the collaboration of an unsuspecting account holder is another instance in which there can be a leak of personal information to a third party.
Another means of losing personal account information would be being the target of viruses and worm software which would track all the login information and transmit it to a third person.
What measures would be useful to establish online banking safety?
In relation to online banking, the experts always request the users to maintain a strong password, to change it frequently, not to use the same password and usernames that was used for other sites, typing the web site address in the address bar rather than clicking on a link…etc to prevent the information be easily extracted by a third party.
Do not keep written documentation related to usernames and passwords unattended or unsafe and the advice would be to shred these documents to prevent any information from getting leaked.
Not responding to emails asking personal account information would also be very important as it is the number one culprit in extracting personal information illegally.
Furthermore, avoiding accessing the bank accounts using internet cafes or Wi-Fi hotspots is also a safe suggestion and even if you login through your own computer, make sure that you keep the computer under password protection, maintain up to date anti-virus software as well as to keep the operating systems up to date.
Finally, before doing an online transaction, make sure that your system is secure, virus free and no one else has access to your desktop.