Beware of Fake Mobile Banking Apps

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Let’s face it, mobile apps are an integral part of our daily lives, but so are fake apps and phishing attacks. According to Helpnet Security, during one quarter of last year alone, phishing attacks launched through fake mobile apps tripled. The FBI warns that with a 50% surge in banking app usage, during the COVID-19 shutdown, consumers need to beware of fake banking apps. Not just a nuisance, once scammers have your log-in information, they can wipe out your account in seconds, leaving you in financial disaster. So how can you help protect your accounts against these dangers? In short, Strong Passwords and Two-Factor Authentication. Here’s how:

  • Create passwords that are at least 8-10 characters in length. Be sure to include upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and special characters like!|*@.
  • Change your passwords frequently. Avoid simply changing a number or substituting a number for a letter – i.e. hack3r.
  • Don’t use the same password for multiple accounts. If a hacker compromises one of your accounts he will have access to all of those with the same password. “Create unique passwords for banking apps.” (FBI)
  • Avoid using birth dates or the names of your children, spouse, or a favorite pet. This information can be easily obtained from social media or other online resources.
  • Never share passwords with anyone.
  • Use a password manager to help store them securely. Avoid storing passwords in an non-encrypted email.
  • Opt for two factor authentication to access your accounts, whenever possible. This will provide an extra layer of security to help keep corporate and customer data safe.
  • “Use strong two-factor authentication if possible via biometrics, hardware tokens, or authentication apps. Use multiple types of authentication for accounts if possible.” (FBI)

Sources: BBB.org, Stay Safe Online, FBI, Helpnet Security.

Also check out Increased Use of Mobile Banking Apps Could Lead to Exploitation and Passwords & Securing Your Accounts.

To report a scam, go to the BBB Scam Tracker. To find trustworthy businesses, go to https://www.bbb.org

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