Nowadays we depend greatly on technology for performing our daily tasks and this includes financial transactions, payments of bills and purchases online. With the use of innovative services, we can now pay our electricity bill with a click of a button, instead of heading to the respective service and queuing for ages.
We can buy whatever we want in the middle of night, Saturdays and Sundays, even on holidays – without any problem whatsoever. These have all made our life a lot easier, in ways that we could not even begin to imagine some years ago. However, different times call for different measures and so we have to be made aware of the changes that have occurred with the passing of years.
Our bank account is directly linked to all the sites that we use for online purchases and therefore we ought to make sure that no security breaches emerge. Bank account safety is of paramount and indisputable value to every single one of us, since there is nothing more frustrating than realizing that you have just made something right by doing something wrong in its place.
Nobody can argue that there is a growing fear among people, as to the quality of sites that ask for online payments and other financial transactions on the Internet. Nevertheless, there are some guidelines that will help you maintain the benefits of online banking without settling for a less secure overall online environment.
Why You Need Bank Account Safety
Some might argue that a secure bank account is the norm and that there are only few exceptions verifying the general rule of safety online. Still, nobody can expect you to trust the statistics and do nothing for empowering your bank account safety. After all, there are various different reasons why we all need to keep our banking activity perfectly safe:
- Prevention of Hacking: As time goes by, crooks and hackers of all sorts make use of more sophisticated software and tools. We need to be able and prevent such activities, in avoidance of having our personal data intercepted and our bank account hacked and taken advantage of.
- Prevention of Fraud: Similarly to hacking, online frauds make use of phishing and lure people towards writing down and sharing their sensitive data online. Even though they appear to be legit, the truth is that they are not and that they only aim to get the info they need from you.
- Avoidance of Wrong Transactions: If you have secured your banking account, you instantly minimize if not eliminate any unauthorized transaction that occur. So, you will never have to worry if someone else has accessed your very own banking account.
Keeping Your Bank Account Safe and Secured
You do not need to panic, as there is nothing too difficult for you to handle regarding the maintenance of your bank account as safe and perfectly secured. On the contrary, you will come to realize that there are some truly easy and simple things that you can do towards offering yourself the best possible security online for your banking transactions at all times. Let’s have a look at the major things that you should not do without, shall we?
- Always Keep Your PC Secure: This means that the desktop or laptop or any other device that you use for connecting to your bank account should be thoroughly secured. Do not neglect to use up-to-date antivirus and software that safeguards your privacy.
- Set up a Solid Password: The password that you use for entering your bank account should be really hard to guess (if not impossible, of course). Do not go for the easy road here; the whole point of entering a password is for you to make things more difficult for those who wish to gain unauthorized access to your account. Go for a password having numbers, digits and special characters in it (making it a combination of different things).
- No Personal Details: There are times when you need to be kept vigilant, as to the details that you share with others. Before you go ahead with entering your personal details online, check to see whether or not the address bar has got a padlock. Otherwise, the site is not protected and may be a fraud.
- Review Your Monthly Statement as a Must: Do not just stay idle, when you notice that something is wrong. Even a minor financial transaction that has not been authorized by you should alarm you right from the start. This makes the review of your monthly statement a must!
- Notify Your Bank ASAP: Should something suspicious come up, you should waste no more time; instead, you should contact your bank representative and try to sort the matter out as soon as possible. This will allow you to avoid any further damage, to say the least.
- Monitor Your Accounts Regularly: Even during the monthly statements that are sent to you via email or in print, you need to keep an open eye and check your accounts. This is how you can understand when something is wrong on the spot.
- Change Your Passwords Often: Even if you have found the perfect password, you cannot keep it forever. The more a password is used, the less effective it becomes. So, make sure to change your passwords regularly and to find equally powerful options to make use of.
- Check for Encryption: Encryption is always a great way for you to know that your personal information is not shared with others. When a site uses encryption, the data sent and received is always encoded and this means that the details you share are not easy to crack. Of course, VPN is always an option for advanced encryption.
- Keep Your System up-to-date: Besides your antivirus software, it is important that you benefit from updated versions of all the other programs that you use (for instance the OS that you use). When you have a powerful device, the threats diminish.
- Check Daily Balance Summaries: If you wish to be in control of everything, daily balance summaries can be proven extremely helpful to you. They are the updated summaries of your bank account for the day you are interested in. So, you can keep track of what you have paid for at all times.
- No Sharing Info: No matter how convenient it might be for you to share the banking information of yours with your better half, your best friend or even a colleague, you should in no way do so! Sharing means that something is out of the dark and thus it is known to others.
- Log Out at All Times: Do not ignore the attention that is drawn to logging out from your account upon the completion of your work. Banking account safety is based on logging out, when you do not wish to perform any other financial transaction. It is like leaving a place after you have finished buying something; where is the point in staying till you need to use the same store again?
- Decline Automatic Log-In: This is similar to the previous guideline offered above. The whole aspect of online security is based on the acknowledgement that you are better off without anyone knowing a lot about your bank account. So, having the username and password details written and saved a priori does not do justice to your efforts of enhancing your overall online protection.
- Avoid Signed Blank Checks: This is not so much for online banking, but we have thought it best to outline the obvious; when you are concerned about the safety of your bank account, it is a huge NO-NO to give a signed blank check to somebody.
- No Online Banking at Public Places: You should know that public Wi-Fi networks are the most dangerous places on Earth for leaking personal information and having your sensitive data intercepted within a heartbeat. So, feel free to use your online banking credentials in the privacy of your home or your office and not when you are out for a cup of coffee or during a business meeting.
In conclusion, you can benefit from a perfectly secure online banking account without having to spend endless hours in front of your PC or laptop. The only thing that is required of you to have safe online transactions is consistency. Under no circumstances should you compromise your feeling of security, in order to satisfy your need for convenience.
This is the road to disaster and you should not jeopardize your financial benefits, just for the sake of comfort. Do not fear of online financial transactions; however, you should be made aware of the dangers towards being able to overcome them efficiently!
Top/Featured Image: By Geralt / Pixabay