It’s easier than ever to upload your payment information to mobile devices. Actually, it’s more important than ever to be able to do do so. With so many services requesting or demanding such information, it’s practically impossible to avoid putting your credit cards, bank accounts, and other financial information out there.
None of that means that it’s safer than ever to upload such information. Quite the opposite. There are more opportunities than ever for someone to steal your payment info if they’re trying to do so.
Since you sometimes can’t help but upload payment information to your mobile device, we recommend following these protection tips for a little peace of mind.
Create Strong Mobile Payment Information Passwords
You’re probably tired of hearing this advice, but that doesn’t make it any less true. Strong passwords will protect your mobile information.
The rule here is simple. No two services that store your mobile payment information should use the same password. Otherwise, you run the risk of a single breach compromising multiple accounts.
Use Apple Pay For Mobile Payment When Possible
It may be hard to believe, but Apple Pay really is one of the safest mobile payment options available today.
Despite the rise of competitors, Apple Pay remains one of the most historically secure payment options. Apple has remained committed to improving their security options over the years which means that they offer an additional layer of security for all applicable transactions.
Don’t Save Mobile Payment Information to Websites (When Possible)
We admit this is a hard tip to follow. After all, it’s so convenient to have your payment information waiting for you at checkout. That’s why we can’t recommend that you never save payment information.
However, you should certainly limit how often you save your credit cards. Not every website needs to store your payment information. If they say they do, you should look for a way to remove it after the fact. Again, this move helps limit the impact of potential data breaches.
Limit How Many Cards You Upload to Mobile Payment Services
Some services like Amazon let you upload multiple credit cards and debit cards. Doing so can seem like a convenient way to access whatever mobile payment information you have.
Here’s the problem, though. Not only does this mean that an account breach exposes more cards to hackers but it means that a physically stolen card is that much more dangerous. When you have to upload information, try to limit it to one card.
Use a VPN to Protect Payment Information
To be honest, this is more of a general security tip. However, it can absolutely help you protect your mobile payment information.
After all, VPNs protect you against data breaches and hackers. Considering that those are the primary sources of stolen payment information, using general protection methods to combat them is always a good idea.
Do Not Pay Apps You Don’t Trust
Most of us only give our payment information to relatively trustworthy apps. While nothing is 100% safe, you can typically rely on services like Amazon over smaller sites.
Every now and then, though, you may be tempted to send payment information to a smaller app you may not completely trust. In those instances, you should use a combination of research and instincts to determine if that’s a good idea. If such transactions are unavoidable, try to use a payment buffer.
Limit the Use of Venmo and Other Person-to-Person Transfers
Modern needs have contributed to the rise of person-to-person payments. Being able to directly transfer money to someone via an app is a tremendous time-saver.
Still, there are many who feel that these services create unnecessary mobile payment risks. The jury is still out on that one, but basic security rules still apply. That means limiting how many of these apps you use and how often you use them.
Never Pay Through Public WiFi
In case you haven’t realized, protecting mobile payment information often requires basic security tips. It turns out that a little effort can go a long way.
However, this is one basic security tip that is especially relevant to making mobile payments. Public WiFi security is generally weak, but it’s especially dangerous for online transactions. Not to make you paranoid, but this is one of the top ways that hackers steal information.
Don’t Subscribe to Too Many Payment Services
Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal…there’s no shortage of mobile payment options available today. It may be tempting to give all of them a shot.
However, you should know that doing so only exposes you further to payment information breaches. The fact is that you don’t really need multiple mobile payment options these days. Find one you like and try to stick to it.
Set Up Security Notifications
We understand if you’re tired of notifications. However, there are just some things that you need to know about as soon as they happen.
That’s especially true of payment information breaches. Your banks and credit card companies should offer you the option of receiving a notification when they detect a security risk. Some apps may offer a similar service. Try to subscribe to those notifications for the payment types and services you use most.