Security Best Practice: Confirm Banking Changes by Phone

April 17th, 2023 | Best Practices, Security Culture

As the world becomes more digitized, the need for secure banking practices has become more important than ever. While online and mobile banking have made managing finances easier, it has also opened new avenues for fraudsters to exploit. To protect your financial accounts, it is important to confirm any banking changes by phone. In this blog, we will discuss the best practices for confirming banking changes by phone. 

Security Best Practices: Confirm Banking Changes by Phone 

Why Confirm Banking Changes by Phone? 

Confirming banking changes by phone is a secure way to verify any changes to your account. It ensures that the changes made are authorized by you and not by someone else who may have gained unauthorized access to your account. Confirming by phone also adds an additional layer of security as it is much harder for fraudsters to impersonate you over the phone compared to online. 

Best Practices for Confirming Banking Changes by Phone 

Initiate the Call Yourself 

Always initiate the call yourself to confirm banking changes. Do not call a phone number provided in an email or text message as it may be a phishing attempt to steal your information. Instead, use the phone number on the back of your debit or credit card, or on your bank’s website. By initiating the call yourself you can ensure: 

  1. Security: It helps to ensure the security of your financial accounts.  
  2. Accuracy: When you initiate the call, you can provide the financial institution with the correct and updated information.  
  3. Peace of Mind: Confirming banking changes by initiating the call yourself provides peace of mind that your accounts are in order and that your financial transactions will proceed smoothly.  

Verify the Identity of the Representative 

Once you are connected to a representative, ask for their name and ID number. Then, verify their identity by asking for their department or position, and ask for the reason for the call. If they are legitimate, they should be able to provide you with the information you need. Verifying the identity of the representative when confirming banking changes is important for several reasons: 

  1. Prevent Fraud: By verifying the representative’s identity, you can ensure that you are speaking with a legitimate representative from your financial institution and that your personal information is secure. 
  2. Protect Personal Information: By verifying the representative’s identity, you can ensure that your personal information is not compromised. 
  3. Accuracy: By verifying the representative’s identity, you can ensure that you are speaking with the correct person who has the authority to make the necessary changes to your account. 

Provide Limited Personal Information 

Be cautious of the personal information you provide over the phone. Only provide the minimum amount of information needed to confirm the banking changes. For example, you may be asked to provide your name, account number, and last four digits of your social security number. Avoid giving out your full social security number, date of birth, or any other sensitive information that could be used to steal your identity. Providing limited personal information when confirming banking changes can:  

  1. Protect Your Privacy: The less personal information you provide, the less likely it is that your personal information will be misused or fall into the wrong hands. 
  2. Minimize the Risk of Identity Theft: By providing only the necessary information to confirm banking changes, you can minimize the risk of identity theft. 
  3. Reduce the Risk of Fraud: By providing only the information necessary to confirm banking changes, you can reduce the risk of fraud. 
  4. Stay in Control: You can choose what information to share and what information to keep private, which can help you to maintain your privacy and security. 

Beware of Urgent Requests 

Fraudsters may use urgent tactics to pressure you into confirming banking changes quickly. Be wary of urgent requests and take the time to verify the legitimacy of the request. If you feel uncomfortable, hang up and call your bank directly to confirm the request.  

  1. Avoid Scams: By being wary of urgent requests, you can avoid falling victim to these types of scams. 
  2. Prevent Mistakes: This can lead to errors in communication, which can result in incorrect or incomplete updates to your account. 
  3. Protect Your Security: Scammers may try to convince you to provide personal information, such as your account number or password, which can then be used to access your accounts or commit fraud. 
  4. Verify Authenticity: If you receive an urgent request, take the time to verify the request by contacting your financial institution directly through a verified phone number or email address. 

Confirming banking changes by phone is an important security best practice that can protect you from fraud and unauthorized access to your account. By following these best practices, you can ensure that any changes made to your account are authorized by you and keep your finances secure.  

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