Gone are the days when you had to physically visit a local bank to withdraw money, deposit a cheque and carry out other transactions. Now, thanks to the technological advancements of the 21st century, banking is at your fingertips.
With a few taps on your smartphone screen or a few clicks on your desktop, you can send and receive money from across the world, check and pay your electricity bills, pay your gas bills, buy things online, schedule payments in advance, and do all sorts of things from the comfort of your home.
In other words, the growing popularity of online banking in Pakistan has made life easier for people of all ages, enabling them to make transactions on the go without having to step out of their house.
Tips to Ensure safe Online Banking in Pakistan
Here are some internet banking security measures that everyone must know by heart and follow unfailingly to ensure the safety of their money.
Change Your Password as Frequently as Possible
Changing your password on a regular basis may seem like a hassle, but it can protect your online banking details. If you are someone who likes to use the same password for all of your social media and banking accounts, you need to get rid of this habit and make sure to update your password every few weeks to prevent anyone else from gaining access to your money.
Moreover, if you use more than mobile banking apps, make sure to use a different username and password for each of them.
You also need to ensure your passwords are complex and hard to crack. One of the best ways to go about this is to use a mix of upper and lowercase letters along with incorporating a few special characters and numbers. Also, consider using longer passwords and avoid using ‘1234,’ your address or date of birth as your login pin.
Enable the two factoe authentication system
Enabling the two-factor authentication system is among the best practices for online banking security in Pakistan. Most banks not only give their customers an option to enable this service but also encourage them to use it to prevent any third parties from accessing their account.
So, how does two-factor authentication protect your online banking details?
The process is pretty straightforward. Once you use your desktop or mobile application to enable this service, you will receive a text message, an email or both with a one-time password, more commonly referred to as OTP, every time you log in to your account or make a transaction. In some cases, you might also be required to complete biometric verification in order to process your application.
Though it may seem like an extra step, enabling two-factor authentication is one of the most important safety tips for online banking in Pakistan.
Sign up for text and email alerts
When it comes to safety tips for online banking in Pakistan, this one goes hand in hand with the two-factor authentication system.
Almost all leading banks provide their users with an option to receive text or email alerts every time they make an online or offline transaction. This service usually has a very small fee and can save you from a lot of headaches.
If you ever receive an email or text message alerting someone has withdrawn money from your bank account, you can immediately notify the bank and show them the notification as proof.
Never use public wi-fi
Does your building have free Wi-Fi? That’s great. You can use it to text your friends and stream videos, but please do not use it to access your banking apps.
One of the most important safety tips for online banking in Pakistan is to steer clear of public Wi-Fi, as it doesn’t provide users with secure internet connections and may allow hackers to learn your login details without breaking a sweat.
Although encrypted web pages (the ones with “https://” at the beginning of the URL) can keep your information safe, it is still suggested to your personal internet connection or cellular data to log in to your digital banking app in Pakistan. For extra protection, consider setting up a Virtual Private Network (VPN).
Be wary of opening any suspicios emails
Have you ever clicked on your Junk or Spam folder only to be bombarded with tons of emails with very important subject lines from unknown senders? These are commonly called spam or phishing emails as they usually try to trick users into giving away their online banking details or credit card information.
The best solution to this is to never click on any suspicious links within these emails. Even if the email is supposedly sent by your bank, never divulge any important information over an email. You must also remember that banks never ask their customers to share their private information through email, call or text.
However, if you are unsure about the legitimacy of the email, please call your bank for confirmation.
Avoid using automatic login
What could be more convenient than letting your computer and smartphone remember all your login details?
When you allow your browser to remember your username and password, you are basically letting it store all of your sensitive information in one place. This lets you carry out digital banking in Pakistan without having to remember any of your login information.
Needless to say, automatic logins are not safe at all, because if someone were to gain access to your computer or swipe your phone, it would take them less than a minute to get into your bank account.
Download the official mobile banking app
Unfortunately, computers are more prone to viruses and malicious attacks. Therefore, most experts suggest that the safest way to do online banking in Pakistan is to download the official mobile application of your selected bank. This way, you won’t have to access your account from your desktop and can easily use your smartphone to carry out all the transactions.
However, please note that mobile phones can also get hacked. However, since almost all mobile apps provide two-factor authentication service, using the digital banking app is generally considered a safer option.
Update your computer and mobile device
Want to take safety precautions for internet banking in Pakistan? You can start by updating your computer and mobile devices.
Since these updates can take up to several hours, it is understandable that most of us keep putting them off for as long as possible. Not only does this affect the functions and speed of your device but also make it more susceptible to security breaches. Therefore, make sure to update your laptops and cell phones to ensure maximum protection against malicious attacks.
ecure your mobile device
Does your mobile phone require a pin code, pattern, fingerprint or facial recognition to unlock? If it does, your data is relatively safe. Even if your phone ever falls into the wrong hands, your advanced security measures will keep criminals from breaking into your phone. However, if your cell phone only requires a simple swipe of a finger to unlock, please know that your digital banking information may be at risk.
Securing your phone is among the top internet banking security measures that can make a world of difference and ensure no one gains access to your money.
Monitor your bank statments
Most banks are now providing their users with an e-statement service by emailing them their complete bank statement every month. If you haven’t signed up for this service, please make sure to do so as soon as possible, because this would allow you to access your bank statement at your convenience.
Moreover, it would make it easier for you to keep an eye on your account balance. You are also encouraged to go through your bank statement every month and notify the bank if you come across any fraudulent activity or notice a digital banking transaction that you did not make.
To conclude, you must be proactive to prevent any security breaches while using online banking in Pakistan. Make sure to use complex passwords and update them regularly, enable two-factor authentication, set up text and email alerts, only use home Wi-Fi or cellular data to log in to your account, don’t allow your browser to remember your details and never click on any suspicious links.