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How to do personal banking online safely

How secure is your personal banking in Mill Creek, Utah? Online personal banking is a convenient way to pay bills and make many different, routine transactions from the comfort of your home, or when you’re on the go and just don’t have time to get to your branch.

You can protect your identity and your personal banking accounts with a few simple do’s and don’t’s.

How to do online personal banking securely

The first thing to do is to choose a secure personal banking provider—a financial institution you can trust to protect your identity and financial information. Look for a financial institution that has invested in data security.

A bank owned and operated in the community where you live can provide customized solutions that meet your needs with up-to-date technology. Secure Socket Layers, for example, is a technology that encrypts transaction information between the bank and the customer.

It’s also important that the financial institution regularly updates its security technologies to stay ahead of criminals. When you log into online banking, check for the lock symbol or the “https:” code in the address bar of the website.

When using your credit card or electronic device for purchases, keep it in your hands or in sight at all times. Check your bank account records and statements regularly. If you see any transactions you don’t recognize, report them to your bank immediately.

Choose secure passwords

For online and mobile personal banking, you’ll need a password. Be sure to choose one that is easy for you to remember but difficult for anyone else to guess. Don’t use your birth date, your name or the names of family or pets. Change your password frequently, and keep it secret.

Don’t do these things

Never share your passwords or personal identification number (PIN) with anyone else, not even your spouse, partner or other family members. Doing so can void any protection offered by your financial institution or online service provider.

Don’t share your password or personal banking information by email. Reputable banks and financial institutions will never ask for your password. If an email or social media message asks you to verify your information or password, it’s a scam.

Don’t use the same password for different sites or banking accounts. Have a unique password that would be difficult for anyone else to guess for every online account.

Don’t share too much personal information, such as your birth date, where you went to school and other details about your life. Always question why a company or a website needs your personal information. Even when you are dealing with a well-known company that you trust, be aware that hackers can break into their databases and steal their information.

There is a black market of personal information. If you share too much personal data, criminals could put together enough pieces of your personal history to steal your identity and defraud you.

Don’t use unsecured public wireless connections, such as at a coffee shop, for online banking or credit card purchases. Criminals can use those locations to detect your secure banking information.

What to do if you become a victim of fraud

If you think you are experiencing fraud, begin by starting a written log. Write down the details of the incident, the date on which you noticed it, the actions you took and the names of the people with whom you spoke. File a report with local police about the problem.

Contact your financial institutions—not only the bank involved but also every other location where you have accounts so those institutions can watch for suspicious transactions, too. Also reach out to utilities and other service providers you pay using your bank account.

Get informed

First Utah Bank has information and resources to help you bank online safely. Check out our online resources or come into our branch for personal banking in Mill Creek Utah, or any other branch, and talk to one of our representatives for help.