Bank fraud is ever-more prevalent these days, so it’s important to be vigilant when banking online. Here are some best practices for online banking, many of which have been provided by Bank of America:
- Be attentive during your online sessions. Know when and how the system will prompt you to enter your user ID and passwords, whether it’s when logging in or to approve a transaction. If you see prompts for entering your credentials that appear out of sequence or at odd points during your workflow, don’t enter your credentials, and contact your bank.
- Pay attention to the appearance of the banking screens. If they look different than what you’re used to, it could mean that your browser has been compromised. Stop your transaction and contact your bank.
- Consider using a dedicated computer for your online banking. If you use the same computer that your kids use for gaming or Facebook, you may have unwittingly downloaded malware from unsafe websites.
- Never use the same passwords on multiple websites, especially your banking application. If a hacker obtains one password, you don’t want to automatically give them access to all your sites.
- Verify that your browsers are connecting to all online banking sites via a secure session. The URL for websites using this protocol will begin with https://.
- Avoid using automatic login features that save usernames and passwords for your online banking applications. If your computer or mobile device would be stolen, all a thief would have to do is go to the right website and they’d walk right into your account.
- Never access bank, brokerage or other financial services information from a public or shared computer such as an internet café or public library. Also, avoid using public Wi-Fi networks when accessing your banking sites.
- If you think your account has been compromised, immediately contact your financial institution. Every minute counts when trying to reverse and recapture lost funds.