Make banking hassle-free

Make banking hassle-free

Summary: At a recent dinner held in conjunction with my former principal's retirement, I was taken aback when I found out that several of my former school mates do not subscribe to the idea of online funds transfer.My friends, mind you, hold respectable professions--some are lawyers and entrepreneurs--and have been exposed to technology at least half their lives.

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TOPICS: Security
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At a recent dinner held in conjunction with my former principal's retirement, I was taken aback when I found out that several of my former school mates do not subscribe to the idea of online funds transfer.

My friends, mind you, hold respectable professions--some are lawyers and entrepreneurs--and have been exposed to technology at least half their lives.

It's the fear of money landing up in the wrong accounts, one pointed out. A couple agreed that it was mostly the hassle of having to remember bank account numbers.

This led me to think about the move by Singapore banks over the last few months to enhance the security of online banking. The mandatory two-factor authentication policy is tipped to better protect customers. But, a balance has to be achieved between security and providing ease-of-use services to customers.

The main grouse has been that users are not given a choice amid the different modes of added authentication, but the underlying grumble is the hassle. With choice, banking customers can opt for the authentication method that they feel affords them the least hassle. For me, it's a hassle when I receive different hardware tokens from banks that I have a relationship with.

Kudos then to OCBC for offering three modes: hardware tokens, software tokens and an SMS (short messaging service) tool to generate one-time passwords and provide the second layer of authentication.

The two-factor authentication wave sweeping across Asia is still relatively nascent, and banks in the region will do well to consistently look at how they can make Internet banking as hassle-free as possible for customers.

Topic: Security

About

Eileen Yu began covering the IT industry when Asynchronous Transfer Mode was still hip and e-commerce was the new buzzword. Currently a freelance blogger and content specialist based in Singapore, she has over 16 years of industry experience with various publications including ZDNet, IDG, and Singapore Press Holdings.

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4 comments
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  • What is so good about 2FA? It is using the RSA or DES encryption which is so well published. Besides, banks has thus far demostrated their low reliability and prone to hacking.

    Not just big off-shore banks, local bank like DBS were hacked and money stolen. Many US companies have been using 2FA for remote access and VPN. The security feature has been deemed insufficient and thus there are models that is shifting to high tech, like retina scan, voice recognition and exotic authenication modes.

    Credit card companies are also deemed very secure but still we have card numbers and information stolen every now and then.

    Don't try to put down your friends and business decision makers. Their fears are valid and they transfer alot of money. If you have that kind of money you would be thinking thrice too.

    I find your article distasteful and rude to begin with.
    anonymous
  • To: Anonymous,

    I would seriously suggest that you keep up with the times.

    Internet banking is here to stay. I have no qualms carrying out transactions thru the internet, large or small the amount, it doesn
    anonymous
  • To: Anonnymous
    Your are right to say our world is insecure, and that's why banks (and not only) need to step up the security measures. Would it be better if they would sit back and watch the hackers taking over? I can only be happy that they are looking at methods to make it more difficult for the bad guys to get hold of my money... Notice that i said "more difficult" not "impossible", because we all know that there still methods to do it, but those are getting more and more complicated and difficult to implement so that only the very few really "talented" ones and willing to take the risk will try. And they will not target your or my account as the payment will not justify risk (at least for my account case :D)

    RSA & DES? Well published? Again, you're right! They are open algorithms that have been overly tested and proven to be secured. (btw, it is probably triple DES)

    You said that banks are being hacked and money stolen. Look at the statistics...
    How many transactions go through without disruption vs hacking incidents? In the same light air companies should stop flying because planes crash (and not just money gets lost but lives are wasted) ... you should stop driving because car accidents happen... don
    anonymous
  • I guess your professional friends are transferring very big amount of money with 5 zeros behind? but then again, banks like DBS has certain limits to how much one can transfer ($1000?)

    as for remembering account number, quite an ignorant excuse, just only need to do once, and it will register in will retain in your Internet account. no need to remember thereafter.
    anonymous