Are mobile payments secure? This question emerged to every mind when online shopping and mobile payment came in the market. The flexibility and convenience levels it has come up with has made it trendier among the mobile users.
Nearly, 55.0 million people are using mobile payment options in the US, which makes around 20.2% of the population there. The mobile payment options are rapidly replacing the outmoded payment options allowing the customers to make payments or complete transfer transactions through technologies like Android Pay, Samsung Pay, Apple Pay, Paytm wallets, and many more. However, when it comes to the security of making mobile payments, there are some loop falls.
5 Mobile Payment Security Concerns to Consider
According to a survey, the total percentage of mobile payment crimes has reached 71% in 2019. And according to the experts, this percentage is sure to rise unbelievably in the coming years. Hence, for the people using mobile phones to make payments, here are the top 5 security concerns that need to be considered to avoid any kind of fraud.
1) Using Multiple Software Options
Similar to laptops and desktops, mobile phones are also working on various hardware and software systems. There are still some people who are using the old versions of iOS and Android globally. And this can lead to various security issues. The devices are not well supportive of the latest mobile security technologies which attract the hackers and fraudsters for exploiting and attacking.
Again, if mobile applications are secure, the device may not meet the standards, providing you with the basics of mobile security. The mobile devices also need to be secure enough with advanced features to protect you from any kind of frauds. Some of the examples of a secure mobile device include verification codes to mobiles or emails, face scanners, fingerprint scanner, geofencing, voice recognition, etc. Hence, look for a smartphone with advanced features regarding the software and hardware for an end to end protection of your payments and accounts.
2) Oops! I lost my phone!
Today, smartphones are similar to credit cards. It contains all the necessary details like the contact information, names, personal collection of photographs, social media connections, and whatnot. Similarly, it also provides complete access to bank accounts, debit cards, and credit cards through various payment apps, mobile wallets, online banking apps, and much more. But what if you misplace your phone at any store, restaurant, or any other crowded place? All your personal details are sure to get leaked right? And this includes all the banking and mobile payment details, which can lead to frauds.
Not, every person who would find your phone would return it. Hence, it is better to look for smartphones that come with in-built protection to protect your phone, mobile phone wallets, and other fraud activities. Rather than looking for a single authentication method, go for a two-factor authentication process for unlocking the phone through facial recognition, fingerprint and iris scan options along with the PIN.
3) Inappropriate using habits
Even if you have a highly secure mobile phone, the way you use your mobile phone can be problematic regarding payment security. The fraudsters can use the website version of your mobile phone to make purchases or payments. Many mobile phone users use Google Chrome browsers for making payments through mobiles on Android phones. And browsers like Chrome and Safari are highly risky to use for making payments.
If you are using mobile phones for making payments, for adding to its security, it is essential to use browser detection, which would protect the users from the frauds carried out through insecure mobile browsers. Instead of such browsers, look for secure and advanced mobile apps that come with an updated version. Lastly, there are mobile users who don’t use any kind of PIN locks or other security options on their mobile phones, which allows the fraudsters to make frauds when the devices are lost. So, look for an updated payment app and browser for adding to the security of mobile phones.
4) Protect your mobile wallet
With the introduction of mobile payment options, several payment apps came into existence. Paytm, Google Pay, Apple Pay, PayPal, and many such payment wallets rapidly gained popularity with amazing offers, cashback, discounts, etc. All such applications work when a debit or credit card is added in the mobile wallet. Details like the card number, VCC number, expiry date of the card, etc. when entered in the application through encryption which is carried out through code. Again, the mobile wallet providers also use a token number generated randomly for making a payment which is not visible to the merchants while transactions are carried out.
The cybercriminals can misuse your account numbers, but when you add any credit or debit card to the payment apps using any pubic Wi-Fi, the risks increase to a great extent. The criminals can easily spoof off all the details used for making the transaction used while registering. For protecting yourself from such frauds, use your cards with mobile wallets while you are at home or having a personal network secured with a password. Using Virtual Private Network is also the best way to look for security while using a mobile wallet.
5) Beware of App Clones
Are you sure you have installed the right application on your mobile phone? Or is it one of the app clones? Surprisingly, there are various app clones designed similar to the original apps that provide secure payment options. When any user uses such app clones and registers their banking details in it, it becomes easier for the criminals to carry out fraud activities through credit cards, debit cards, and other personal information. Such app clones come with ridiculous and poor security options that can be easily accessed by the criminals.
Both Google and Apple come with required protection while you download it for use. But the cybercriminals still have different ways of installing the clone apps that contain the virus for your device. For the iOS devices, the fraudsters use the jail-broken devices to make a fraud payment. And the best way to keep your cellphone away from such app clones is using an anti-malware tool.
The systems that contain anti-malware tools or software would protect your phone from the installation of any such app clones. Research is still on the way to find the right solution to such malicious clones. Taking an example of one such successful payment app, Klarna, Sweden-based payment app, has recently raised funding with its 3 powerful strategies.
There are various measures which can help smartphone users from such frauds or cybercrimes. Do your research, improve the strength of your passwords, use the find my phone app, use your personalized network, avoid making payments with public networks, educate your loved ones with safe mobile payment processes, and much more.
No doubt, there are some security issues people should be concern about while using mobile phones, it is still much safer compared to the plastic cards you carry in your pockets. If you use the mobile payment options, being little conscious while using it to make a transaction, there are no chances your financial details would be misused by others. So, think twice and act smart while using mobile phones for making a secure payment.
About the author
Nirav Shastri is a Sr. Digital Marketing Strategist at Space-O Canada, the mobile application development company. He has 7+ years of experience in the Information Technology industry that inspires him to share his knowledge through articles. Nirav also works with a team of experienced creative digital strategists to generate unique and data-driven campaigns. He spends his time reading about new technology and trends.