KV Network

Online Mobile Banking and the risks involved

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Rayees Ahmad Kumar
Throughout the world, we are living more and more of our lives online every day. At the same time, we are conducting much of our online activity on our mobile devices. Banking is certainly following this trend.
More than half of all web traffic now comes from mobile devices, and traffic to financial institutions isn’t far behind.
Of course, things that are popular aren’t always safe. The shift toward online and mobile banking is driven mostly by its convenience. Plenty of people just embrace the change without considering the trade-offs.
Many customers take the security of their finances for granted without looking into it.
Obviously, in-person banking is the most secure option. But the fear of hacking shouldn’t make you give up on convenience. If you know the risks of online and mobile banking, you’re halfway to protecting yourself.
Hackers have several methods of gaining access to your financial information. They might trick you into installing malware on your phone or computer. They might send you fraudulent e-mails asking for account details. Or they might break into your device directly and start using those accounts.
The basic risks are the same whether you’re using your computer’s web browser or a mobile banking app on your phone. But different devices have different vulnerabilities. And different apps require different skill sets from potential hackers.
These differences raise an important question for people who are starting to use their phones more than their computers.
Digital fraud, online fraud or cyber fraud whatever name we give it has become a new challenge for bank account holders. The fraudsters use new techniques to drain the hard earned money and the victims are so helpless while succumbing to these frauds. New zero click messages are sent which we don’t even require to open to become the victims. The digital terrorism has assumed new dimensions and we need to be overcautious while exposing ourselves to WWW. World Wide Web has now become the world wide trap to entrap people and drain their money.
Nowadays, we see lot of people receiving e-mails, massage and phone calls from unknown numbers claiming to be either customer executives of the telecom companies or the employees of the financial institutions. In the name of recharging of the SIM cards or winning an offer or lottery, they make a big percentage of gullible people to fall prey
to their mischievous tactics. It results in the loss of their hard-earned money. They ask them during conversation to download some app’s like “AnyDesk” due to which these fraudsters get access to customer’s confidential information like debit card number, OTP, VVP , PIN and validity of ATM card which they use to make the fraud transaction from the victims bank accounts. Banks and other genuine financial institutions frequently aware their customers to keep bank and other confidential information protected and never make an attempt to share it with unknown callers through massages and phone calls but still hackers and miscreants leave no stone unturned to get undue benifits of the victims innocence and simplicity.
Few days before I too received many messages from some unknown numbers posing as Jio executives asking to recharge with an amount of Rs 10 to avoid the blockade of the SIM. For couple of days when I didn’t make a response, they made a direct phone call, asking me to recharge the SIM with Rs 10.
After the completion of recharge procedure when I tried to check the balance of my bank A/C through my mPay I was astonished to see my account deficient by an amount of Rs 42000. Instantly I called the bank headquarter of JKB requesting them to debit freeze my account and suspend the debit card. At the same time I directly called the Cyber Police Srinagar and gave them the full details. Bank statement, screenshots of the transactions and other related information was provided to cyber security officials of Srinagar with the hope to nab the culprit and put him behind the bars so that my hard earned amount is credited back in my account. When I was writing my application at the concerned P/S , I observed many gullible people had the same issues which gave rise to many questions in my mind.
Are the hackers or fraudsters so intelligent and inaccessible that they can’t be either caught or make accountable? Do they have patronage of government or security agencies?
If our cyber security agencies are so high-tech and modernized then why such incidents are frequently experienced and gullible people are victimised with each passing day?
For other cyber related investigations when security officials are making use of every available source and succeed in putting the culprits behind the bars then why can’t they do the same incase of fraudulently withdrawing of money from victims accounts ? These questions need to be answered not merely by hollow assurances but when practically steps are taken to minimise such incidents, a sort of confidence is build upon such agencies. It also helps in checking the crime rate and making a sensible society free from fraudsters and miscreants.
With the onset of COVID pandemic and declaration of national lockdown, people were asked to stay indoors and make use of internet and online modes to do the daily businesses and mitigate their grievances.
When online and internet use especially online mobile banking has such repercussions, instead of encouraging the use of modern technologies particularly internet it would displease every single mobile banking user if steps to nab the miscreants/ culprits are not initiated.
Need of the hour for our security agencies especially cyber cells is to gear up with the latest high-tech and modernized technologies so that online money stealers are caught at the right time and given the highest possible punishment as per the Cyber Crime laws. Further the development of ant hacking technologies is a welcome step in these frequently experienced hacking incidents.
(The author is a columnist and teaches at Govt Secondary School Anderwan Ganderbal)


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