Is mobile banking safe? Are we making ourselves vulnerable to cyber attacks while using mobile banking apps? Achieving mobile banking security is all about understanding what may compromise your security and what measures you can take to protect your finances.
We are using our mobile devices for more and more sensitive interactions nowadays. For example, we use our mobile banking applications to process deposits, oversee our transactions or transfer money between our accounts. In fact, these devices offer us the convenience to perform countless tasks. But how secure are mobile banking apps?
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Mobile banking explained
Mobile technology revolutionises the global banking and payment industry. It offers new opportunities for banks to extend added convenience to their existing customers. In the most basic sense, mobile banking is a system that enables customers of a financial institution to conduct financial transactions through use of a mobile device. Unlike the internet banking it uses an app, provided by the lending company.
Customers are increasingly using mobile banking apps, and for majority of them, this is the most used way of communication with their banks. The wealth of information stored on mobile devices provides a valuable target for cyber criminals. Given that, high-quality mobile banking services greatly impact trust towards the bank and influences bank reputation.
TOP 4 advantages of mobile banking to customers
Today, mobile banking apps do more than conducting financial transaction, that these apps can even notify you when you spend more than you have in your account or let you control your monthly spending. Apart from these, the following are some of the greatest benefits of using mobile banking applications:
How secure are mobile banking apps?
Mobile security comprises several challenges of web security such as rapid development and continuous network connectivity, coupled with the threats common to more traditional applications like local encryption and malware. Mobile banking apps can be targeted from different surfaces, which we cover below.
The growing pool of mobile devices has become an attractive target for cyber criminals. Your mobile phone can be attacked and infected with worms or other viruses, which can compromise your security and privacy. Phone or SMs-based attacks can result in theft of sensitive information, so remain informed.
The influx of new financial applications released every year has increased the volume of cyber security threats against mobile banking apps. Given that, incorporating mobile app security into overall security strategy must be of topmost importance for financial institutions.
Related article: Cyber Security Threats in Energy Sector: Everything You Need to Know
Tips on how to make mobile banking more secure
Reading the abovementioned threat vectors can make you feel uncomfortable about your mobile banking apps. We understand that. Therefore, we provide 3 best practices with you on mobile banking security which you can follow today to keep your information safe.
1. Use your bank’s official mobile app when possible
Instead of using the browser to access your bank account, download your bank’s mobile app. Using mobile apps offer enhance security over browser. Of course, this discussion largely depends on the actual security investment that the bank has made in each application type. But, generally speaking, “bigger banks have better mobile apps and stronger security on them” Forbes says.
2. Do not access your bank account on public networks
Free Wi-Fi? It sounds like comfort, but smells like danger. CSO Online says that “one of the biggest threats with free Wi-Fi is the ability for intruders to position themselves between you and the connection point”. It is actually simple: as Wi-Fi becomes increasingly common, you can expect Wi-Fi risks to grow over time. In case you do not have other option, but to join a public Wi-Fi, use a VPN, if possible. Furthermore, disable file sharing, look out for HTTPS in your browser bar, and do not forget to log out of accounts when finished using them.
3. Activate notifications for fraud alerts
Why fraud alerts are a good idea? Setting up alerts or checking whether you have already opted in must be simple on any mobile banking app. You should be able to find it in the notification settings of your app. Please be informed that some banks may offer this option free of charge for a limited period (e.g. 12 months). Basically, fraud alerts can protect you from fraud by instantly notifying you of any bogus charges and they are paramount to catching the illegitimate usage of a credit card.
You are ready to enhance your mobile banking security
One thing is for certain: no matter the precautions, mobile banking apps are not 100% secure. But this does not mean that you should use mobile banking without security in mind. Consider the best practices on mobile banking security we shared above, and give yourself additional layers of security. After all, the more you know about mobile banking security, the safer you will be, and the better you can protect your money.
Today, many organisations are struggling to reach a level of cyber risk maturity necessary to counter the evolving security threats. We at Swiss Cyber Forum understand this problem. Therefore, we are committed to providing the organisations with access to cyber security training and development efforts to play our part towards building a more resilient a cyber nation. Failure to sufficiently tackle cyber threats can bring undesirable outcomes, including Lost business and negative publicity. Let’s start the conversation now to discuss how our 2 premium training packages (Cyber Security Specialist and ICT Security Expert), both with Swiss Federal Diploma, could help you achieve your desired level of cyber maturity. Get in touch, and we will gladly answer your questions.