It’s all too easy to let paranoia stop you from taking advantage of a mobile wallet. With news of hackers accessing customer information via financial apps, you may prefer to do your banking in-person. This old-fashioned method closes the door to many modern conveniences, like transferring money, paying bills, and depositing checks in a matter of seconds from anywhere in the world. Luckily, you can tap into these mobile services without jeopardizing your financial integrity. You can take advantage of the mobile wallet and keep your data safe by following these tips.
Be wary of what you download
If you use your smartphone as a banking tool, you need to be fastidious when choosing the mobile wallet apps to add to your device. While many banking apps are trustworthy, useful additions to your phone, they aren’t all made with your financial well-being in mind.
Apple and Google do their part to weed out these malicious services from their respective app stores. However, you have a responsibility to review any app you consider downloading, even when you download them straight from Google Play.
It doesn’t matter if you’re looking for a digital payment app or a mobile way to borrow money. You should always check that these services follow the appropriate security measures by reading their terms and conditions. For example, check that your next app has the same standard levels of encryption as a lender like MoneyKey. They offer lines of credit as a loan to millions of Americans via an online platform that includes a convenient app. Whether borrowing a line of credit or cash loan, customers can rely on Secure Socket Layer encryption and Verified Sites to keep their personal data safe.
Become an editor
Another trick to sorting out legitimate apps from fake ones is their copy — or the quality of writing on their app profile and their website. If you notice there are spelling mistakes or grammatical errors in their about or service sections, this is a major red flag. Consider it like the spelling mistakes that riddle the infamous Nigerian prince email scams — it usually means the app is headed by a criminal. Even the smallest companies have to invest a considerable amount of money into their marketing, so it’s unusual for these legitimate services to publish content filled with mistakes.
Don’t stay signed in
It’s tempting to tick the option to remember your login credential. That little gesture promises to save you a ton of grief when you can’t remember your password or when your fat fingers can’t type the right character of your PIN. While it’s a great thing for time-strapped people, it’s a security risk not worth the convenience. If you lose your phone, anyone who finds it can access your saved passwords.
Stay logged out to keep your data better protected. To improve your security even more, you should opt-in to all of the suggested security steps. While apps like Instagram will only require a username and password, financial apps have a more elaborate log-in process. A digital payment app like Apple Pay relies on multi-factor authentication to protect your financial property. In addition to your login credentials, Apple Pay uses a time-sensitive code and biometric data (like a Face ID scan) to confirm it’s actually you spending your money. These steps take longer, but it’s in your best interest to spend the time to protect your personal data.
Privacy is an important element of your mobile wallet. While world leaders are enacting privacy data laws, you have an obligation to follow your own security steps before you can use your mobile wallet safely. When you’re vigilant about the use of your financial information, you won’t have to worry about how, when, or how you use your mobile wallet.