Do You Love Mobile Banking? Find Out How Secure It Really Is!
Mobile banking and convenience are pretty much synonymous with each other. The freedom to conduct financial transactions anytime and anywhere one wants is exactly what’s needed in the modern, busy world of 2019. While mobile banking does offer many attractive benefits, it does leave one a little worried on the security front. Malware or malicious software programs, most notably trojans, pose a severe threat to mobile banking today. These malware seek to obtain the banking credentials of the user, which are then consequently used to steal money from the user. The money could be stolen from the user either all at once or even in regulated amounts over a course of time.
Though there is a growing variety of new mobile banking malware detected year after year, there is one that has gained probably the most notoriety over the past few years, the Asacub trojan. It is one of the most common mobile banking malware attacking the mobile devices.
How Can a Mobile Banking Malware Launch Its Attack On You?
There are a number of ways through which a mobile banking malware/trojan might gain entry into a mobile device.
The trojan could mimic a banking application. Users may not be able to differentiate between the genuine mobile app and the trojan. The careful design of the trojan malware mimicking a banking application would lead users to believe that the trojan is in fact the real deal. So, when the malware would ask users for their banking login credentials through a counterfeit login page, they will enter the details without any suspicions. Little do the users realize at the time that once they do enter the details, their banking account is no longer safe.
Sometimes, a banking trojan could display a notification to the mobile user, asking them to update their banking mobile app to the latest version. Such notifications should be avoided at all costs, because agreeing to the notifications can lead to the installation of trojan on the device.
Phishing also remains a key method for banking malware to gain access to the banking information they want.
Banking trojans may also mimic a non-banking mobile application to deceive the users. For example, they could showcase themselves as an app that facilitates instant messaging or online payments.
How to Keep Yourself Safe from Mobile Banking Malware?
Be Careful About the Access Permissions You’re Giving to an App
Any mobile app that asks to be allowed to access your SMS is an app that you want to beware of. Most banking applications send confidential one-time password through SMS to the mobile device as part of their user authentication process. Therefore, a mobile banking malware app would want authorization to access your SMS text messages, in order to access this OTP password.
Monitor Your Bank Account Regularly for Inexplicable Money Deductions
Since a mobile banking malware may be designed to steal money from you slowly over a time period, you may not even realize that you’re losing money until it’s too late. Therefore, it’s necessary that you keep an eye on the activities that are happening in your bank account. Look out for any unreasonable deductions in your funds.
Download the Genuine Mobile App for Your Bank
As we noted earlier, banking trojans often mimic the real mobile banking applications. Chances are that when you look up the mobile app for your bank on the official app store for your device’s OS, you encounter many choices of which only one would be real, while some could be malicious programs. You need to know for sure that the app you’re about to download is the real, authentic mobile app by your bank. In case of confusion, you could go to the website of the bank, where in all likelihood you will find the steps for downloading the bank’s official mobile app.
Avoid Downloading Apps from Unreliable Websites
While it’s true that Google Play and App Store aren’t exactly free from mobile malware apps, they are still the official stores which makes them much safer option than other sources. Using any third-party website to download mobile apps is risky; the probability for such apps to be malware programs is just too high.
Never Disclose Your Banking Information to Anyone or Anything
You should treat your banking information with utmost privacy. Hackers may try out a number of different social engineering techniques to get this information out of you. They could send you an email or a website URL telling you that you’ve won some big prize and asking for your bank account information. They could call you and pretend to be officials from your bank, saying that your account details are needed for some urgent task. Never fall for such scams!
Remember That Not All Public WiFi Networks are Trustworthy
Connecting to an untrustworthy public WiFi network and using it to operate your mobile apps can be very risky. Given that these networks are often under the radar of the hackers, using these networks to access something as important as your banking app puts you at serious risk. There’s always the possibility that the network has been set up by the hackers themselves. Any data that you transmit over such a network would thus be captured by the hackers. Hence, if you have even the slightest of doubt about the credibility of a public WiFi network, don’t join it.
Use an Anti-Malware for Your Mobile Device
It’s a good idea to ensure that the mobile device is under the constant protection of an anti-malware solution. So, do install one for your device. Again, you want to be careful about the anti-malware mobile app that you’re installing. The last thing you want to do is install a malware that’s posing to be an anti-malware! Do make sure that you scan your device regularly using the anti-malware and that you keep the anti-malware mobile app up-to-date.