Digital wallets can be a great resource for frequent online shoppers or anyone who prefers contactless payments. It can save you time at checkout, and when done right, it is more secure than carrying cash since cards can be canceled whereas cash is lost forever. Examples of digital wallets include Google Pay, Venmo, Paypal, and Apple Wallet.
Essentially a wallet is created in these platforms by creating credentials – a username, password, with valid email – and then adding in your desired payment methods. This can include credit cards, debit cards, and bank accounts. Now rather than search through your bag for your wallet, everything is at the tip of your fingers – in the phone you’re already scrolling through while you shop.
Sounds great – but is it safe?
Through encryption technology software, your financial information is safe when using these apps. However, there are additional safeguards to make using digital wallets even safer.
Avoid public WiFi when using your digital wallets
Shared WiFi could mean you’re sharing your information with a hacker. These WiFi systems are easy for them to hack, and they could be tracking your every move, including digital wallet activity.
Turn on automatic updates
This ensures your digital wallet software has the latest security updates, including any hole patches.
Lock your phone
Enable the passcode, swipe code, or biometric authentication features of your phone and the digital wallet app. This gives an added layer of protection if your phone is lost or stolen.
Call immediately if your phone is stolen
Even with the passcode there to protect you, it may only be a matter of time before the criminal is able to bypass it. If your phone is lost or stolen or if your digital wallet credentials are compromised, call your financial institutions immediately to cancel or pause the associated cards.
Monitor your accounts
Finally, you should always monitor all accounts to ensure that activity is accurate. If you notice any suspicious activity, call your financial institutions and report it immediately.