Apple Pay and Online Financial Security

Apple Pay launches in the UK today allowing those with an iPhone to pay for goods using their device.

What is Apple Pay?

Apple Pay is a contactless payment method, whereby users can pay for products and services in a variety of outlets instead of using cash or card. Any shop or store which operates using contactless payment machines will be able to accept Apple Pay payments. You just need to input your card details into your iPhone and you’ll be able to start using the service. The list of retailers that accept Apple Pay is already quite long, and will only get bigger.

How to Use Apple Pay

To pay using your iPhone, you simply need to hold your phone over the payment machine (usually a chip and pin reader) with your finger over the thumb sensor for a second or two until the display indicates that the payment has been accepted.

How Safe is Apple Pay?

 There are some that are skeptical about how safe it is to pay in shops using your mobile phone, however Apple Pay is completely secure. First of all, a finger print ID is needed to use it, all bank details are stored securely using different layers of encryption, and Apple themselves are not able to track your payments.

Keeping Your Money Safe Online

The idea of online banking and contactless payments will be new to some people, with security being a major concern. Here are 5 ways you can keep your money safe online:

1. Use Official Apps and Websites
Only download the official apps from your banks. These apps are completely secure and ensure your details are not shared with anyone else. When visiting bank websites, check that they are the official site by looking for the padlock in your browser. This indicates the website is authentic and has the necessary security certificates.

2. Don’t Click Links in emails
Spam or phishing emails are quite common. Never give your details in a link that you have clicked from an unsolicited email. The same advice applies to cold callers. If somebody calls and asks for your bank details, you should never give them out.

3. Use Strong Passwords
Avoid using common passwords. If possible, avoid using words that are relevant to you, or something which may be easy to guess. Always aim to use a mixture of uppercase, lowercase, numbers and symbols to achieve the strongest password possible.

4. Use Credit Cards
Opt for credit cards over debit cards when you can. This allows you to track purchases easily. Credit card companies will often have stringent anti-fraud measures in place, and some will be insured against fraud, meaning there will be no cost to you in the event that something unfortunate occurs.

5. Be Wary of Open Wi-Fi and Public computers
Avoid using online banking with public Wi-Fi networks. These networks are accessible by anyone, leaving your details susceptible for theft. This goes for public computers too. Harmful software may have been installed by malicious individuals who may be able to record your passwords and information. Only use public Wi-Fi networks and computers for general browsing.