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Is Mobile Banking Safe?

Americans love their smart phones.

The reasons for their adoration are seemingly endless. They Facebook. They text. They Google. They listen to music and watch movies. They take photos and video. They GPS their way to new destinations.

And increasingly, they bank.

First Bank has offered customers a mobile banking app since 2008, and in the recent years added increasingly popular features such as mobile check deposit, a P2P services, and financial management and budgeting tools.

Unlike larger regional and national banks, who are constantly adding “shiny” new app features in an effort to draw new customers, smaller community banks like First Bank wait until the technology is more proven. It doesn’t take much longer, but our goal is to maintain a top level of security and a good customer experience.

Consumers who are new to mobile banking might not realize that banking through an app is more secure than through a web browser, says Cary Whaley, vice president of payments and technology policy at the Washington-based Independent Community Bankers of America.

The vast majority of fraud involves credit/debit cards and checks, rather than from mobile apps, Whaley said. With a mobile app, the bank knows with whom it’s dealing. The app typically cannot be accessed without a password or challenge question, and now, with biometrics such as a fingerprint and FaceID.

“That’s pretty powerful security,” Whaley said. “We would call that 2-factor authentication.”

Ready to get started with mobile banking? Download the app today.

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