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Mobile Banking: Is It Safe?

I use my smartphone for everything. My phone holds my contacts, grocery shopping and to-do lists, and my entire family’s schedule. I also depend on it for banking because it’s the most convenient way to manage my family’s finances, regardless of where I am. And it’s incredibly secure.

You may be asking—can cell phones truly be that secure? The truth is, mobile banking can be more secure than traditional banking when you follow guidelines to help keep your private information safe:

First, protect your mobile device. Know where your phone is, keep it in a safe place and use an access passcode.

Second, make your bank account password smart. Change your bank account password every six months, don’t write it down in your phone and make sure it’s different than your social media passwords. Consider how often you use Facebook to log into other apps—which is why a unique banking password is critical.

Third, ensure your financial institution has tight security. While every financial institution wants customers’ money to remain safe, you still want to look for institutions that use multiple layers of security to protect your information. Options including biometric screening add personalized protection. Review the security measures that exist when mobile transfers are made. Is your financial institution asking security questions that only you can answer?

Fourth, opt into eStatements. Paper statements can fall into the wrong hands and may contain too much sensitive information.

Fifth, keep an eye on your accounts. Regularly log in and review your transaction history. Sign up for alerts and notification services that tell you when balances drop below a specified level, when transactions occur or when certain approvals are required—all in real-time.

Any time money is involved, there are potential security risks. But with proper measures, mobile banking has security that tops most other options. Plus, it’s the most convenient way to stay on top of your finances, whether at your kitchen table, out running an errand or traveling halfway around the globe.

Bonus: What is biometric screening?

Biometric screening uses physical features, like your fingerprint, as your passcode. Eyeprint authentication goes even further and maps the blood vessels in the whites of your eyes. Each person has four eyeprints—two in each eye—that are completely unique to them. In order to access certain mobile banking features, a person’s eye prints must match the ones stored in the phone perfectly. Which means only you have access. It’s the security equivalent of a 50-character, complex password each time you log in.

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