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Keeping your bank account secure online

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by Startacus Admin

online scams and fraud

Banking online allows us to manage our finances on the go making transacting quick and easy but how can we ensure that our accounts are secure and our passwords protected from fraud. Here's some ways that we can aim to protect ourselves against scams and what to do if you are a victim of fraud.

How does my bank keep my money safe?

All financial institutions have the responsibility to keep our accounts safe by having sophisticated systems in place that are designed to detect fraud and help prevent it. This security is vital in order to keep our accounts secure online and there are several components to the defence mechanisms banks have in place.

Banks require us to have login details that adhere to strict guidelines. The passwords and security numbers that we choose must be difficult to guess, be alpha-numeric in their format and often contain special characters for added protection. When we log in to the online platform the bank must ensure that they are using strong encryption to ensure that the information we are sending digitally cannot be read by cybercriminals and two-factor authentication should be in place for any payments we wish to make.

Usually, the bank will only allow us to login to one device at a time, ensuring multiple users are not accessing the same account and the navigation of the website should be such that a secure log off is always required.

dealing with online scams and fraud

What can I do to keep myself safe online?

When we are logging on we should be doing so from a device that has anti-virus software installed.  This ensures we are directed away from websites that are not trusted and we are alerted to any potential cyber-attacks.  

We also need to make sure that we are accessing our accounts using a secure network. If we are at home this means checking that our wireless network’s security settings are activated on the router, deflecting any direct attacks. Another good way to stay safe is to ensure the bank’s website has a padlock symbol contained in the address bar, this confirms that the website is encrypted so none can access any passwords you type in. An example of this can be seen on BBT who have an SSL and the secure message “Branch Banking and Trust Company [US]” in the address bar.

I think I have been a victim of fraud, what should I do?

You are the person in the best position to know whether a transaction on your account is genuine. It is important to stay up to date with card payments, credits and transfers so that any irregularities are quickly identified. If you notice anything unusual it is vital to contact the bank directly and as quickly as possible. All banks have a dedicated fraud department who will investigate all suspected transactions and are obligated to refund any unauthorised payments proven to have been made fraudulently. They will also provide you with new card details and online banking credentials to reinstate the security of the account and to ensure that every step is taken to protect you and your money.

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Published on: 29th July 2018

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