7 Tips for Safe Online Banking

With banks improving their security, fraudsters are also coming up with innovative ways to trap victims. If you regularly use online banking, here are a few safe banking tips that are sure to help: 1. Selecting a strong password Your online banking password should be alphanumeric and a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters. Add some special characters to it, and you will have a password that would be almost impossible to crack. Never use common phrases or words as your password. This means that your name, pet name or date of birth should be avoided. Also change the password regularly for better safety. 2. Never share your password A strong password is only useful as long as no one gets access to it. So, make sure that you never share your banking password with anyone. Also, many people have a habit of storing their password in their computer/laptop or mobile phone. If at all your computer/laptop is hacked or mobile is stolen, someone can easily get access to your online banking password. So, make sure that you remember your password and never write it down anywhere. 3. Avoid phishing e-mails Phishing is now one of the most popular types of online banking frauds. Fraudsters send you an e-mail which appears to have come from your bank or other reputed websites. These e-mails generally have a link that you are asked to follow. Once you click on the link, you will be redirected to a page where you will be asked to enter your banking details. Know that no bank will ever send such e-mails where they will ask you to provide your banking details. Avoid such e-mails as you can be an easy victim of a phishing scam. 4. Use your own computer/laptop For online banking security, make sure that you always use your own PC/laptop for online transactions. Public computers are not safe and can provide someone access to your online banking account. Similarly, use a trusted internet connection for such transactions. Public Wi-Fi and hotspots are prone to hacking and should be avoided for banking transactions. 5. Use licensed Anti-Virus software To protect your PC from virus attacks, it is also vital to invest in a licensed anti-virus software. Free antivirus software is not as powerful and cannot protect your computer from newer viruses. You should keep your operating system up-to-date to prevent hacking and other fraudulent activities. 6. Register for account notifications Most of the banks now offer account notifications through e-mail and SMS. Register for this service to receive alerts for every debit and credit transaction. This will make it easier for you to monitor the transactions. If at all your account details are compromised, the notification will alert you if there has been any unauthorised transaction. You can then instantly get in touch with your bank to get the account blocked. 7. Type the URL of your bank Rather than following any links for online transactions, prefer typing the bank URL in the address bar of the browser. Once you reach the online banking page of your bank, check whether it has an "https" prefixed in the URL. The prefix indicates that the communication between the website and the browser is encrypted and secure. Genuine sites feature this prefix. Enhanced safety for online banking Customers and the bank should work together to ensure that the online transactions remain fully secure and protected against common types of banking frauds. If you use Internet Banking, you should always remember the online banking security tips mentioned in this post to avoid falling victims to such frauds that could easily result in severe monetary losses.

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