By TV Ramanmurthy, General Manager, Information Technology, Bank of Maharashtra
Digital technology has transformed how banks interact with their customers. In just a couple of years, the banking sector has been at the forefront of digital adoption transforming the way we do business in India making way for online bill payments, mobile banking, and social application banking. It’s been almost a year since demonetization was implemented and the growth of digital transactions is a springboard, higher than ever before. Increased by 50 percent, India is now on a path to reach its goal of 25 billion digital transactions in 2017-18.
According to a CII report, the banking sector in India is currently worth Rs 81 trillion and is expected to become the fifth largest in the world by 2020.In the last decade or so, the evolution of the banking sector has led to the active participation of people in financial system than any time since independence. Financial literacy is another factor resulting in the increase as a result of initiatives taken by the government of India, the Reserve Bank of India and financial technology companies. The digital payments infrastructure is facilitating the direct transfer of subsidies and other funds to over 35 crore Aadhaar-linked savings accounts, annually — leveraging the power of JAM (Jan Dhan-Aadhaar-Mobile).
Digital payments or transactions involve both credit and debit cards; unstructured supplementary service data (USSD), a two-way communication between a mobile phone and an application program; prepaid payment instruments (PPIs) such as e-Wallets; internet or online banking; and BHIM app (Bharat Interface for Money), based on the unified payments interface (UPI) that enables instant fund transfer between any two bank accounts via a mobile platform.
But there is another side of the coin:
While many people are shifting from traditional banking and going digital, there is a real threat of data theft, cyber attacks, and security breach. The modern reality is that not only do we need to keep our physical assets safe but also need to be digitally secure.
Almost every other day there is a story of ransomware- where a malicious software steals a person’s confidential data and denies accessibility unless a ransom is paid or thousands and lakhs of rupees disappear instantly from persons account after he has received a call or sent an SMS.
Though banks and fintechs are taking all the necessary precautions to fight cyber attacks, one should always be aware of the dos and don’ts of digital/online banking.
Here are some of the factors that one should keep in mind while adopting this new form of transaction:
Avoid Third Party Link
Update your Bank.
To conclude, the days of vanilla banking are over. As the banking sector moves deeper into the digital era where banks provide 24×7 technologically advanced products and services to various categories of customers, the latter must exercise greater caution to avoid digital and net banking fraud.
As India continues to migrate to a less-cash economy, it is up to individual customers to ensure the safety and security of their payments systems — and enjoy the ease and convenience of digital banking.
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