The demand for smart banking has increased in the UAE. The country has the highest ratio of smartphone usage in the world according to Google’s 2017 Connected Consumer Survey. In 2015, the GCC Digita Banking Report by EY also concluded that 81 percent of banking consumers would switch to a bank that offered mobile banking services.
The general consensus is that mobile banking is as safe as online desktop banking. Moreso when phone security options have been implemented like password protection, face recognition and fingerprint ID.
The demand for mobile banking in the UAE is being met with open arms. Currently, banks like First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB), HSBC UAE, ADIB and Emirates NBD are already offering mobile banking services. Another 45 percent of banks are also on track to spend between $5 million and $20 million to develop smart banking technology.
With this increase in mobile usage, many people ask if mobile banking is safe.
Smart Banking Security
Banks with mobile banking apps offer the latest technology to keep your information safe. In the case of FAB, their mobile app offers a secure connection that does not store any of the user’s banking information on their SIM card or phone.
The app is also locked by a six-digit PIN code that requires authentication before the user can access the platform. In the event activity on the app is idle for three minutes or more, the application will log the user out immediately. The app also uses SSL encryption to protect the user’s activity.
The bank’s app is not much different from other global mobile banking options in terms of security. Most banks offer SSL encryption for secure connections for both mobile and online banking and a predetermined logout time in the event of inactivity.
FAB’s app also offers security beyond this. If a user forgets their PIN, they can opt to create a new one. Their current app will be deactivated and they will be prompted to create new login credentials. The app remains deactivated until the process is completed. If the phone is lost or stolen, a quick call to the bank will unlink the service from the phone. Alternately, if the user decides to sell their phone, they can easily unlink the device from their mobile banking app from within it.
Banks like ADIB offer enhanced security through fingerprint ID.
As with all banking precautions. The user should facilitate secure banking by participating in a few precautionary methods.
How to Keep Your Mobile Banking Secure
Keeping your mobile banking experience safe is also possible from the user’s end. If you bank via mobile, be sure to never share your passwords with anyone. If you need to share your passwords with anyone, choose a trusted member of your immediate family like your spouse or parents.
Phones that have mobile banking apps downloaded on them should also have locking options enabled. For newer smartphones, enable facial recognition or fingerprint ID locks. For older phones, a PIN code or password should be used if advanced features are not enabled.
Never use your mobile banking app in a crowded space where there may be people behind you looking at your screen. And don’t share your app PIN with friends or associates.