The Benefits of Online Banking
Online banking provides a convenient way to monitor your checking and savings accounts, transfer money from one account to another, and pay bills. You will rarely need to step foot in a bank again for everyday banking transactions.
Common Online Banking Features
- Account Summaries. If you have multiple accounts with you bank, you can see the current balances of each account, making it easy to check if funds are running low or if you have the necessary cash available to make a purchase.
- Transaction Histories. Whether you are a heavy debit card user or check writer, you will be able to view individual transactions for your accounts and be able to tell when the birthday check you sent to a niece or nephew gets cashed or when your paycheck hits your account.
- Account Statements. Electronic account statements make sense for most people, and they are eco-friendly. Instead of sticking them in your desk drawer, unopened, you can access them online when you need them.
- Transfer Funds. Running low on cash? Most online banking platforms allow you to transfer funds from one account to another, making it easy to stash excess cash in interest-earning savings accounts.
- Mobile Deposit. Did your aunt or uncle send you a check as a birthday present? Did you get a nice tax refund from the IRS? Mobile deposit services make depositing easy and convenient by using your smartphone’s camera.
- Online Bill Payment. You might get out of the habit of writing and tracking checks altogether. Monthly payments to the cable, gas and electric companies, and mortgage and auto lenders become a breeze. Plus, you will save on postage.
- Alerts and Notifications. Automatically receive your account balance via email or text, or receive a notification when for debit card transactions or your account balance gets low.
Access AnywhereConsumers have migrated internet use more and more from their desktop computers to their smartphone or tablet devices. Digital banking has followed. Most banks and credit unions have expanded account access through direct apps that you can download to these devices, making it easier to access your account information at any time and from any place.
Safety FirstOf course, you will have to practice smart Internet skills if you participate in online banking. You cannot do much to stop a widespread hack of your accounts. Unfortunately, that can happen.
To start, you can protect your accounts by choosing strong passwords. You want your password to be one that you can easily remember but that no one else would guess. It is best to include letters, symbols, and numbers in your password. Be sure not to use easy-to-guess passwords such as the street on which you live or your birth date.
Most banks and credit unions offer even more sophisticated ways of protecting your digital banking experience.
- Multi-Factor Authentication. In addition to your account password, you will also be required to provide alternative forms of authentication, either via a PIN or code texted to your smartphone.
- Biometric Authentication. This expands the identification process to a unique biological characteristic, such as facial recognition or finger prints.