Updated January 1, 1 . AmFam Team
Digital wallets and mobile pay accounts are a big step toward simplifying and streamlining our lives. Imagine not having a wallet or purse stuffed with credit cards, membership cards, receipts, and cash.
Whether you’re going to use your phone, tablet or smart watch as a mobile wallet, our security tips can help ensure your digital transactions are safe.
First, let’s go over what a digital wallet is. A digital wallet is a financial transaction application that runs on mobile devices. It provides a secure virtual space for your payment information and associated passwords to call home.
Rather than fumbling through an overstuffed purse or wallet for you credit card receipts, a digital wallet provides a streamlined, one-stop location for your digital receipts. But digital wallets can store much more than just receipts. Here are some other items that can be stored digitally:
And that’s just scratching the surface! But the more sensitive the data that’s stored in a digital wallet, the more desirable it can be to hackers and cyber criminals. It’s extremely important that you secure your digital wallet properly.
Just like a traditional wallet, a digital wallet can be stolen if you’re not extra careful. If the password you use to encrypt your digital data isn’t strong, a cybercriminal can easily compromise your digital wallet and steal your funds, identity, or anything else stored within the compromised application.
1. Fraud protection. You’ll have some options for linking your mobile wallet to your credit card, phone bill or your debit card. Check into each option to see who has the best fraud protection. Linking to your credit card will give you the same level of protection you’d have if you used your card — linking to your phone bill or debit card may not offer that level of security.
2. Check app terms and conditions. It’s tempting to ignore the terms and conditions when you want to get in on the next app game craze, but you should always keep tabs on what information you’re giving away.
3. Only use trusted apps. Mobile apps have added security built in to protect your transactions. If you go to the site through a web browser you won’t get that extra protection.
4. Use a password. Create a strong password to protect your phone, tablet or smart watch. Then create a different one for your mobile wallet for an added layer of security.
5. Don’t use public wi-fi for sensitive data. Avoid the temptation to check your account balance when using public wi-fi. Think of it as letting someone peek over your shoulder at the ATM.
6. Update your software regularly. Although sometimes seen as a hassle, regular updates are a key part of your digital safety. Since hackers are always finding new ways to breach personal data, updates allow your applications to be one step ahead of the latest breach technique.
7. Keep an eye on your accounts. It’s always best practice to check your checking account balance regularly. And if you notice anything peculiar or a charge you know you didn’t make, you should reach out to your bank immediately.
Your mobile wallet can be even more secure than carrying a credit card as long as you stay on top of mobile security tips and trends. With a little vigilance, you’ll be ready to embrace a tech-savvy future with less wallet clutter!
To alleviate any digital wallet security concerns that you may have, American Family Insurance offers an excellent identity theft protection coverage option. For more information on how to protect your digital wallet, follow this link for tips and tricks.
This article is for informational purposes only and based on information that is widely available. This information does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal or financial advice. You should contact a professional for advice specific to your situation.