I remember not too long ago when mobile banking and payments was taboo. It was thought to be unsafe by many people; a scary black hole in which unsuspecting users where trusting their entire financial lives. Today, this is not the case. Even with constant public breaches of personal information, consumer comfort seems to be at an all time high. Instead of the traditional wallet with several forms of payment, people are leaning on the convenience of the mobile wallet. Perhaps, it is the evolution of technology and one’s daily mastery use of it or even the ease of access that makes cashing a check by taking a picture instead of driving to the bank, that much more appealing. With an estimated $8.6 billion (that’s billion with a “B”) annually of card payments fraud, what should you do to keep your money and information secure?
Free Wifi + Mobile Payments = No Bueno. Logging on to free Wi-Fi in public spacing is like holding up a neon sign saying, “Please rob me”. The reason for this is that public Wi-Fi is simply that…..public. It is not encrypted since you don’t have to enter a password for access. That is to say, that those who also share the network with you have access to certain sites you visit, even those with the https:// in front of it, which denotes a secured website. Want to keep your access secure white using public Wi-Fi? To start, only visit sites that don’t require you to enter a password like SheMakesCents.
Log Out. When you sign into your mobile banking, look at the balance of your student loans, or pay a bill through online bill pay, it is imperative that you not only log out when finished, but close the tab. Cell phones and other mobile devices store so much of your private information that has the ability to collect your personal data when you visit other sites. Think about it, if you had your banking tab open at the same time as your Facebook tab, for instance, you might start seeing banking ads in your timeline.
Stored Mobile Payment Information. Keep track of the apps that you allow to store your payment information. With all the conveniences of iTunes, services like Zifity who bring food to your front door, Uber who provides car service and even Fandango the movie ticket savior (I hate standing in long lines) it’s easy to lose track of who has access to your credit card/ banking information for mobile payments.
To enjoy the convenience of mobile banking and payments, is to make smart decisions, be as proactive as you can to protect your devices and access to your information. Data breaches happen and for those highly skilled hackers these tip may not matter. But if you are on top these fool proof suggestions, it can make it harder for the average Joe to prevail in robbing you blind.
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