The scariest thing about mobile banking

Let’s face it, people are scared of a lot of things. I guess they should be, you can see it every day on TV, or in your social media feeds. Everything is out to destroy your lives, take your jobs and eat your lunch, or that you’re going to catch the virus. The hackers are just waiting to steal your identity if look them directly in the eyes. But, digital banking on your smartphone shouldn’t be one of them. And during this time of social and physical distancing, banking with your mobile app is a way to protect yourself and others around you.

Taking a deeper look into some of peoples’ “concerns” with mobile banking, people seem to think that face-to-face transacting is the only safe way to go. That’s OK too for people who want to come into a brick and mortar building to do their banking in normal circumstances. For the rest of us, there are digital solutions, on a desktop computer, tablet or smartphone.

Even before COVID-19, fewer people using branches for basic transactions and more are doing their banking at their own convenience at home. Or at work. Or in their underwear. Need to deposit a cheque? No problem, the app can do that. Transfer money between accounts, send money to a friend, pay a bill? Done, done, and of course you can.

People are worried about their information being out there. That’s a valid concern, but not when it comes to the increasing security that’s happening across the board with mobile banking. There have been major data breaches that have hit retailers and a gazillion other merchants. These people will still have no problem make those face-to-face purchases or giving credit card information and personal info to those merchants for a discount.

Some people may be concerned about the technology, and errors that could come with technology. Fear of technical errors is a concern sure, although to be fair, it’s usually a human that causes an error, not the technology.

Far and away, the largest percentage of people are concerned about identify theft. Honestly, that’s not how identity theft works. Should you use public Wi-Fi when doing your banking on your phone? Absolutely not. Just like you shouldn’t log into a public space, like a public library to do your online banking. Just don’t.

If you want to be scared of mobile banking, you should be more scared of snakes coming out of the phone when you use the banking app. I don’t think it’s ever happened, but I guess it could. Perhaps your mobile banking app will access the naked pictures of yourself you keep on your phone, and post them on Facebook. Sorry to tell you this, but that’s scarier for the rest of us than it is for you. Pro tip: don’t have naked pictures of yourself on your phone. Just saying.

And the most logical reason for fearing mobile banking is that you will give your ID and password to a phisher, through social engineering. Those emails or calls seem so legit. They’re not. You access your app or your digital banking over your phone or computer. If you need help, you call us, and we’ll help you. Call a number you trust. Out of a phone book… gasp. Or one you can find on our website (but not in the email). If that little voice in the back of your head is whispering or shouting at you about it, listen. It usually is onto something.

Fear keeps us from doing some things, good and bad. Just don’t let fear prevent you from keeping you safe.

Wednesday | April 7, 02:48 PM
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