Be Safe With Online Banking

Protecting your privacy is an important concern for everyone who surfs the Internet every day, but when it comes to staying safe with online banking, extreme precautions must be taken.

The World Wide Web is rife with criminal activity such as identity theft, financial scams, phishing and many other fraudulent activities.

However, the number of banks and financial institutions with an online presence is increasing every day, because the Internet is a convenient way to offer their products and services while making communication with consumers easier.

From this approach, consumers have numerous advantages over traditional or telephone banking, managing their accounts from a central location without leaving their homes or offices.

With banking expansion, new tools for secure banking are being developed every day, but there is no better tool than your informed decision and common sense, being aware of any possible fraudulent activity.

The way to avoid costly mistakes is to ask if you receive a surprising message from your bank urging you to log in and update your information, it is more likely that someone is trying to victimize you. So a quick phone call to your bank can confirm what you should already know: most financial institutions won’t ask you to do this.

Before signing up for online banking, be sure of its legitimacy by confirming that your deposit is federally insured. After this basic safety routine, learn more about the service and understand your rights and obligations as a consumer.

If anything is unclear, get help from financial advisors or banking regulators. The “About Us” section is the source for guidance; otherwise, contact the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) for more information about the institution and its offerings.

Privacy must remain your primary concern to avoid identity theft, so be sure to keep your personal information private and secure. As of July 2001, all banks must provide their customers with a copy of their privacy policy.

Sometimes, your information will be shared with bank affiliates or other parties to help push products and services you may need. Although you have the right to refuse to have your information shared with others and banks must comply with your wishes.

Online transactions are conducted over a public network: the Internet. Your bank’s responsibility is to provide you with guidance on security practices to keep your credit card and account numbers, social security number, and other personal information safe.