25 April 2014
Many people today are running around with the latest phone and a funky phone case, and they rely on it not only to stay in touch and do their shopping, but more and more to do their banking on the run. Banks now have official banking apps and are keen on security, but is security technology really keeping up with hacking technology? The number of malicious programs aimed at smartphones has doubled in a year and more and more of them are trying to steal money from people’s bank accounts via the apps. It is becoming a big industry for hackers, especially in Russia. Russia has the highest number of attacks on personal bank accounts, with India, Vietnam, the Ukraine and the UK making up the other top five countries where bank account hacking takes place. It’s expected that bank account attacks will spread rapidly into other countries as activity grows.
Cyber Crime Is Getting Clever
Phishing is one way that hackers get personal data. It’s important never to access your bank account via a link in an email you have received or via a search engine listing. Always access it directly by typing the web address in your browser bar or saving it to your bookmarks. Never reply to an email sent from your bank or enter any information. Malicious programs can be spread by compromising official legitimate websites or through the less commonly used app stores, so check out the apps you decide to download. They then spread to other users by sending out text messages or emails from the first user with a link to malicious code. If you receive an email from a friend that seems slightly odd, then best to just delete it and let them know. Some writers of viruses use techniques such as obfuscation, which means that they make the code extremely complex so that it is unclear what it is for and confuses your anti-virus software long enough for it stay on your phone and gain access to your data and possibly your banking app. The more it confuses the anti-virus software, the longer it stays and the more likely you are to lose some money.
The Banks Are Fighting Back
Banks are improving their security and many now offer another type of security on top of your passwords. It's called two-factor authentication. It means that as well as your user name and password, you need to have another form of identification in order to access your account. Some banks will send you a separate key pad which generates a unique code. You can attach it to your key ring or phone cases. You then have to enter this code as well as your password and user name. A new code is generated every time you use it, and because it is a separate device it is virtually impossible for any hacker to work out.
Rahima Aktar on Friday, April 25, 2014 · Leave a Comment