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 Post subject: Is it safe to do banking via wireless at home??
PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 7:57 pm 
Willamette
Willamette

Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2005 12:17 pm
Posts: 1489
I've always been a little paraniod about doing any banking online via a wireless connection (even from home). I've always used a wired connection for this.

But, as long as the bank uses SSL, and your Wireless network is encrypted (with either WPA or WPA2) is it safe to do online banking over a wireless connection??

(I'm getting to a point where I'm sometimes in the kitchen on the laptop and need to look something up, but don't want to go to my other PCs, and I keep all of my financial information on my laptop because I'm the only one that uses it -- that and I do software testing on the other computers, so their OSes tend to get a little trashed after a while)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 01, 2010 10:58 pm 
Little Foot
Little Foot

Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2005 1:36 pm
Posts: 155
I'm not entirely sure, but I do it. I live in Chicago and there are quite a few other wireless networks, some are even open. I use WPA.

There is always the possibility someone could be intercepting the data, but I guess I'm relying on the fact that if someone has the expertise to intercept and decrypt wireless data that they are doing it in a richer neighborhood. I would assume where you live probably increases/decreases the chances.


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 Post subject: If you have to ask dont do it.
PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2010 3:25 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Sat May 15, 2010 9:23 pm
Posts: 43
It is more safe then walking through the doors of the bank, and looking at the teller in the eye? I don't spend enough money to worry about the "convenience" factor. I can afford to waste a few minutes at the bank and not spend one minute worrying about the security of my computer.

In other words, if you want to shop online, or do any banking, do it with a separate account dedicated for that purpose, and limit the amount of damage someone could do if they got through your security. For example, only keep a $100 in it, or limit your spending habits, or use gift cards.

Some people use online banking for years with no problems, so there really is not a good answer other than deciding how much risk you want to take. Some bank accounts are not protected by default, and you may have to purchase additional insurance.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2010 7:56 am 
Java Junkie
Java Junkie
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Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2004 10:23 am
Posts: 24236
Location: Granite Heaven
Oh, the paranoia. A good attitude to have, actually.

Online banking is a necessity for many people. I don't have the time to waste going to the local branch and standing in line to transfer money between accounts, pay bills, etc.. Time is money.

You're more likely to have someone steal your CC numbers when you use the card at the mall than online.

Online banking is as safe as you make it. Period. Most banks (all banks in Canada, by federal law) protect your money and guarantee that protection. If your money gets ripped off, they replace it. Just like Visa.

First, find out what your bank's policy is regarding identity theft, compromised accounts and online banking. This is assuming you didn't do that before opening an account with the bank. If they don't satisfy your needs, find another bank.

Next, harden your link to the bank. I have two PCs in my house that are hardwired to my firewall and those are the only PCs that are used for banking. I've gone so far as to block access to the bank sites from my netbook and notebook so I don't get lazy. Wireless encryption is not foolproof.

Finally, check your bank's encryption. Mine uses a 128-bit RSA encryption scheme that is, for all intents and purposes, safe. If yours uses anything less .. find a new bank.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2010 8:37 am 
Willamette
Willamette

Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2005 12:17 pm
Posts: 1489
Most US banks do protect your money (through the United States FDIC system), but this only applies to runs on the bank, I think (as like in the Great Depression, and such). It DOES NOT protect your money against someone getting your account info or CC number and accessing your money. Some banks do offer protection against this (like you have to pay a $50 deductable and then the bank will cover the rest providing that you can prove it wasn't you and it truely was fraudulant by someone else).

But in any case, I suppose one would have gather all of the wireless packets and be able to assemble them, and then decrypt a 128-bit+ encryption sequence to be able to gain access to anything. Plus, I guess most banks operate online, so you're just getting HTML data essentially, and not actual bank data directly, so yes, I guess now that I think about it, the likeliness is small. But I will still stay very paranoid, and try to use the wired network as much as possible (I feel better about it). I figure many people use wireless connections at home to access their financial data. I just would never do it in a public place, like a restaurant or hotel.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 02, 2010 6:41 pm 
Thunderbird
Thunderbird
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Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2009 9:43 pm
Posts: 958
i check my accounts online many times, but i have a hardwired connection. after hearing about the Google Maps car driving around and unknowingly picking up wireless networks, i would not want to try it via wireless.

But i just check my accounts, though. i still write hand checks from my checkbook and take them to the bank - hot girls work there all the time where i live.


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 Post subject: Some commercial checking accounts are not protected
PostPosted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 9:05 pm 
8086
8086

Joined: Sat May 15, 2010 9:23 pm
Posts: 43
Some commercial checking accounts are NOT protected against fraud, unlike the personal checking accounts. Check the fine print or call your banker if you are protected, I just added that warning in there because I discovered this nuance while shopping for bank accounts, and a friend of mine owned a business and an employee did some unauthorized spending with his commercial checking account -- all of which the bank refused to recover for my friend (and it was several thousand dollars).

Even if you are protected, it may be several days before they credit your bank account with the missing funds, and that might be enough time to put a ding in your credit rating if you are late with any payments. A few days might cost you more in new interest fees. Some banks are notorious for having either good or bad service.

Frankly, I wouldn't do any banking online, unless you have to. I asked my banker if I could just check balance information, and that is not possible. Once you set up an access code and user id, all the banking features are available (transfers, wires, etc.) so I just figured it wasn't worth worrying about.

With operating systems being patched on a daily basis, SSL connections really don't give me warm feelings on the matter. Frankly, I would suggest using cash for all your discretionary spending -- less transactions to audit at the end of every month. I don't have a lot of discretionary spending money -- so its not a big deal (wink).


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 Post subject: Re: Is it safe to do banking via wireless at home??
PostPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:23 am 
8086
8086

Joined: Wed Sep 08, 2010 12:15 am
Posts: 1
I really agree with your view point .One can create separate account for online shopping


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 Post subject: Re: Is it safe to do banking via wireless at home??
PostPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 8:37 am 
Java Junkie
Java Junkie
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Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2004 10:23 am
Posts: 24236
Location: Granite Heaven
Please don't resurrect threads that have been dead for months.


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