Banking

Find banking services online

Banking

The idea of online banking is pretty straightforward: making secure financial transactions online without leaving the comfort of your home. Banking online is just like walking into an established and recognized bank, but virtual: real money is involved, but all you need is an account, a computer and Internet access.

Once an account is made, you can pay bills, receive payments, keep tabs on your savings accounts, RRSPs and investments, and even inquire about loan applications or transactions. The level of support may vary by region and by bank, but most of these are basic features offered by online banking services.

Using Online Banking

Online business banking services have actually been in use since the late 1980s, but in an era when few people owned personal computers (let alone mobile laptops), it was not a popular way of doing business. Today, however, buying a computer is not out of reach for many Americans, and neither is making an Internet connection. In addition, Web security has come a long way in recent years, to the point where most PC users feel confident in storing their sensitive financial records online in order to more closely follow their cash flow.

Still, a new business will want to ensure that security is maximized when establishing a Web banking account. For one, only establish an account with a bank you recognize: if an unknown bank or credit union makes you an offer that sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Second, make sure an online banking system uses advanced password protection and authentication, which means you need to input at least one complex password before viewing your account. Many banks now ask users to answer a second personal question before allowing them to see their records.

Users of online banking should be aware of potential threats, too. Phishing attacks often involve fake Web pages designed to look like your bank's regular page, but are actually placed there by hackers hoping you'll enter your login and password, giving them access. Ask your bank what security strategies they provide to protect their online banking software.

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