Mobile Security Tips

We know you’re concerned about security. While we can ensure the safety of your banking information from our end, we thought it would be helpful to provide some tips from our in-house experts on steps you can take to protect information on your mobile devices from your end.

Password protect your device. Smartphone and tablet users should use the screen lock feature and make sure it is secured with a strong password or “draw to unlock” pattern. Never share your password with anyone, no matter who it is!

Set the number of password attempts. If someone tries to access your phone and incorrectly types your password multiple times consecutively, information on the device is automatically deleted.

AutoLock. Set your phone to lock automatically after a certain amount of time or when you holster it. You should set the Security Timeout feature to automatically lock your device after a length of inactive time, anywhere from 2 to 15 minutes. Each device will differ, so be sure to check your device’s settings.

Know where your devices are. When out and about, make sure your mobile devices remain nearby and are never left unattended, and be mindful where your device is at all times. It’s also a good idea to make sure you can differentiate your device from others that might be sitting nearby, by using a unique case or adding stickers. Report a lost, stolen, misused or compromised device immediately!

Note: If you’ve activated the QuickView feature on a mobile device that’s been lost or stolen, you can deactivate the feature by:

1. Logging on to online banking from a desktop or laptop computer

2. Clicking on Account Services and then on Mobile Banking App

3. Clicking Remove to the right of the device name under Registered. The phone will no longer display account balances on the screen without being logged in.

Keep software current. Keeping your device up-to-date with the latest updates, especially for the operating system, will address the latest security vulnerabilities as well as provide new features. Your manufacturer should have all the information you need on their website – the most popular ones are listed below.

Connect safely. Use your wireless data connection when you are on the go instead of public Wi-Fi connections for your smartphone, especially when transmitting sensitive information.

Never store sensitive information. Don’t store passwords or PIN codes on any mobile device that you use to access your online banking.

Always log off. Remember to hit the “log out” button when you’re done your banking! This will ensure that no residual data is left open on your device that may allow an attacker to reinitiate a banking session.

Use your bookmarks. If you access mobile banking through your mobile device’s browser, bookmark the URL and use that to login to your accounts. Never follow email links or links in text messages, unless you’re certain of their origin (like Interac e-Transfer).

When in doubt, don’t respond. Alterna will not request personal information by email or text. If you receive such requests, it’s a scam and you shouldn’t respond.

Don’t “jailbreak” or modify your device. Jailbreaking or modifying your device outside of the manufacturer’s recommendations makes your device vulnerable to malicious software and hacking.

Disable Bluetooth when not in use. The “always on” and “always discoverable” settings leave you vulnerable to hackers. Limit your exposure by disabling Bluetooth when it’s not connected to your Bluetooth device.

Delete text messages containing sensitive information. Regularly delete text messages containing financial or personal information.

Following these simple tips will help keep your information private, safe and secure while on-the-go.