The public has been increasingly pushed by social media interactions and usage of e-commerce platforms for day to day shopping to become dependent on online financial transactions. Whether for shopping or paying for any other online service or bills, we have put our own money in online wallets, banks and other such institutions. But know here that these as well as use of debit cards and credit cards are not safe. Deepak Bhawnani, CEO and Founder of Alea Consulting told Zee Business, ”The details of bank and other financial transactions made from mobile applications, whether e-banking, NBFC apps or other payment platforms and gateways, are accessible to software on your phone.”
In India, mobile-banking services have witnessed a growth of 92% in volume and 13% in value, (RBI Annual Report 2017-18), according to Alea Consulting. The prevalence of such online fraud risks intensifies the immediate need to take precautionary measures to avoid falling into a fraudster trap while transacting online.
Therefore, Bhawnani shared certain practices that an individual should follow to remain safe from online financial fraud.
1. Password: India witnessed 140,000 hacking attempts every hour in 2018. Therefore, one should not choose easy to hack passwords when setting for the phone itself or for any e-transaction account. Main passwords should be changed frequently. They should be long enough and use all kinds of characters and numbers and not just letters of the alphabet.
2. Phishing scam: Its best to avoid clicking or opening attachments that come with unknown sender emails trying to trick people into disclosing their financial details. Always check for the full email ID for the source to validate.
4. Payment: Never let your card be out of sight when using it at a shop/restaurant. It must remain in your line of sight at all times. Have the swipe in your presence to avoid falling victim to card skimming. For online transactions with known entities, it is safer to make small or regular payments through the prepaid wallet than making repeat direct deductions from your credit card.
5. App control and access: It is critical to know if any new banking or finance app you are installing is to be allowed access to your messages or emails. At times apps record, upload and even continuously monitor financial transaction messages and data arriving or stored in your mobile without your knowledge. So if you do not use the app or have completed the transaction it is best to delete the app completely.