We live in a digital era, and new innovative opportunities have made it easier for people to use new technology to manage the tasks in their daily lives. One such example is the rising popularity of mobile payment services like Venmo, Cash App, and Zelle – all of which come in app form, and can be downloaded for free to your mobile device. However, sending money digitally comes with its share of risks, generally in the form of scams designed by bad actors.
If you use mobile payment services, here are a few ways you can stay safe and avoid falling prey to digital scams:
Don’t send money to strangers.
This might seem obvious to the average citizen, but with more and more people using social media to advertise their Venmo or Cash App handle, it’s good advice. Sending money to someone you don’t know personally can come with risks, and it’s best to err on the side of caution. Fortunately, Venmo has a feature where you can verify if the phone number for the person to whom you’re sending money is correct – it’s a smart way to ensure you’re not sending money to someone you don’t know.
Take advantage of two-factor authentication.
Many websites that deal with bank or credit card information will offer two-factor authentication when you log in to your account. After you enter your password, you’ll receive a text message or an email with a numerical code to enter. This step ensures that if someone gets ahold of your login credentials, they’re barred from accessing your account because they need time-sensitive code. If your mobile payment app offers this feature, it’s a good idea to use it.
Boost your security game.
Your password for any website or app that has your payment info on file should be a strong password that’s difficult to guess – in other words, avoid using identifying information like birthdays, anniversaries, addresses, or names of family members or pets. A strong password generally consists of a series of letters, numbers, and symbols, as well as at least one capitalized letter. Additionally, if you have the option to use facial or fingerprint recognition, use it.
Keep a regular eye on your bank account.
As always, it’s important to log into your online banking account once a day to keep up with your transaction history, and to watch out for any potential fraudulent charges. Polam’s mobile banking app is free to download, and comes with an array of features including real-time transaction history, mobile check deposit, bill pay, and much more.