06/07/2022 1:03 PM

Fintechs + Security: what’s the link and why does it matter to me?

The way we save, spend and invest our money continues to evolve, with fintechs leading the charge and shaking up the financial sector.

Gone are the days of writing cheques or waiting in line to speak to a teller. Traditional banks are quickly realising they need to catch up: according to the latest World Retail Banking Report, 57% of people prefer online banking to traditional branch banking.

This lightning-fast global adoption of using online financial services to move money around makes the question of fintech safety and security more important than ever. In April 2021, McKinsey & Co conducted a study of 29,000 respondents in 24 countries and found that digital consumer trust in banking is the highest among all industries. These same consumers said they wanted more secure payment processes from banks, indicating that personal-data security remains top of mind. To retain the trust of digital customers and earn the trust of those still reluctant, security measures need to be top notch

How information is safely transferred when using mobile banking

Once you’ve signed up to mobile-first banking, spending is instant, effortless and usually carried out one of two ways.

The first is by magnetic secure transmission (MST) or near field communications (NFC): this technology sees a smartphone or similar device emit a signal that mimics the magnetic stripe on a traditional payment card. When this type of payment method is used, a payment token replaces the customer’s primary account number. This means digital consumers can make purchases without providing any real account information: it’s a way of maintaining privacy and preventing duplication of payment information by malicious third parties.

Another way of safely spending is via a virtual credit card: instead of using the number on a physical credit card, a random number is generated. This protects digital consumers from having to share actual bank details, or their physical credit card number, which is tricky to replace if stolen.

Safety and security, risk of data breaches, hackers?

While these seemingly fail-safe security measures that mobile banks employ are encouraging, there are ways that consumers can further protect themselves from data breaches and hackers.

Some of the ways are tried-and-true, and have been a way of monitoring activity for decades. Others are more recent, as cybercrime continues to morph.

Think about how much of your personal and confidential information is linked to your bank account, and also the fact that it’s where your money is kept. Extra security measurements might seem like a hassle at times but they’re worth it.

  • Always keep an eye on your bank statements: Checking up on money leaving your account might seem obvious, but it’s often the smallest amounts that are the most nefarious. If you see a change for a very small amount, it’s unlikely to set off any alarms. It may, however, be a test by scammers to see if the bank account information they have will work. Once a small translation has been successful, there’ll likely be a much bigger charge following, or ongoing amounts taken at regular intervals.

  • Changing passwords regularly: We all know that we should change our passwords regularly, but most of us don’t. In fact, a study by security firm SpyCloud estimated that 64$ of people used the same password for multiple apps and programs, and this was based on 1.7 billion usernames and passwords gathered from 755 leaked sources in 2021. To bank more safely, the experts suggest trying to get into the habit of changing your password every three months.

  • Avoid banking from public wifi networks: It might be convenient and free, but public wifi networks are seriously risky if you’re thinking about logging into your online bank account, even if it’s just to check your balance. It’s best to assume that anything you do on a public network can be viewed by others, and that includes your browser history and passwords. Try to remember to do your banking when connected to a secure network, or use the data on your personal smartphone.

  • Enable two-factor authentication: If your bank offers two-factor authentication, take them up on the offer. In fact, some fintechs mandate it. It does take an extra moment or two to log into your account, but having that extra step included in the log-in process keeps you and your hard earned money better protected. You might need to download an authenticator app, or answer a pre-set security question.

  • Stay away from email links: While online banks are likely to communicate with you via email, phishing scams are getting more and more sophisticated. In fact, it’s becoming hard to discern what’s real and what’s not, with clever use of logos, proxy addresses and wording that mimics that of the financial service provider you’ve signed up to. Where possible, type the mobile bank’s name into your search bar, rather than click on a link in an email or text message.

What’s Saldo doing to keep its customers safe?

Safety and security for customers has always been a key priority for Saldo, in addition to providing fast, automatic service wherever you choose to take a loan: Finland, Sweden or Lithuania. . Risks are always assessed before a new service is launched, or a new market is entered into, and security is closely monitored to identify any breaches. The My Saldo platform went through extensive security testing by third parties to ensure that the place our customers manage their loans is watertight. Saldo works with trusted partners to provide secure identification services both in the loan application process and in order to access MySaldo.

What if something does go wrong or if I suspect suspicious activity?

Saldo has a customer support phone line, where you can report suspicious activity: this includes account discrepancies, or communication that claims to be from us but doesn’t look or sound quite right.

Additionally, our dedicated email address will get you in touch with the right person, as quickly as possible. The sooner you contact us with information, the sooner we can act to mitigate any damage.