Smartphones and tablet devices have empowered users who are constantly on the go in many ways. There are applications, or apps, to assist users fulfill virtually any need. These utility and entertainment apps almost always receive a welcoming response from the user community. There is one exception that stands out, though; many people still seem wary of freely using mobile banking apps.
Reason for Mobile Banking Apps Having Low User Proportion
There is definitely no dearth of mobile apps made available for banking; every major bank and other financialinstitutions carries out its brand promotion by releasing newer and better banking apps for mobile users. These are also relatively user-friendly and easy to operate. Yet the Federal Reserve reports that only 21 percent of mobile phone owners have used a mobile app for their regular banking requirements over the last year. This is a shockingly low percentage, considering the immense value that these users are missing out on.
So Why Are People Shying Away from Mobile Banking Apps?
People are afraid of security risks that could compromise their privacy and cause theft of confidential financial data. They are not prepared to put their hard-earned savings on the line. A Google study has revealed that this fear stems from users not having sufficient knowledge about the security aspects of mobile banking apps. While these remain misunderstood, users prefer to keep their distance from a technology that can only benefit them.
What Can Banks Do to Solve the Problem?
Users would love the convenience of accessing their bank accounts from their mobile devices wherever they may be. All they need is the assurance that their mobile apps are as secure as traditional ATM transactions or face-to-face interactions with a bank teller within a brick and mortar building. In fact, they are even willing to access their bank accounts over the Internet using a personal computer or laptop. Little do they realize the irony; mobile banking ranks higher in security than browser-based banking because thebanks have more control over customer interactions with the former. Banking professionals are trying to encourage a more widespread use of mobile banking apps by spreading security awareness and addressing these unfounded fears.
Security Features for Accessing Mobile Banking Apps:
Mobile banking involves a direct connectivity link being set up between the user’s handheld device and the bank, which is independent of third-party applications or additional browsers. Every mobile banking app is custom-built for a specific bank; that allows each bank or financial institution to provide a secure SSL (Secure Socket Layer) encrypted connection to give their customers access through their mobile device. Moreover, this is almost always backed up by two-factor authentication to achieve advanced levels of security for mobile banking apps.
Security Against Loss or Theft of Mobile Devices
Smartphones and tablets offer users the option of clearing or resetting the data stored on the device from any remote location. Using this functionality, users who have lost their phone can immediately delete all the data and apps loaded onto it by using any computer having Internet connectivity to remotely access their mobile device. This makes it completely certain that no one else can access the customer’s bank account using that phone, so the user need not worry about their privacy being invaded or their money being stolen.
Spreading Confidence in Mobile Banking Apps:
For mobile banking apps to rise in popularity, the top goal of bank officials is to assure users of all these security features that are built into them. As they build trust in this mode of carrying out financial transactions, they will gradually start using them more often. And once they realize the convenience that mobile banking apps offer, there will be no going back. This will result in a win-win situation for both the banks and their customers.