What is Online Banking?

Revolut Contributor

 · March 19, 2020  · 03/19/2020

What is Online Banking? Why is online banking important? Is Online Banking safe?

For the answer to these questions and others, keep reading below.

What is Online Banking, and how is it used?

Imagine you could send money to your friend with just a few clicks on your iPad. Or check on that new savings account while lounging in your garden. Online banking makes this all possible.

Online banking allows you to facilitate financial transactions digitally, without having to visit a branch or ATM. From your device – be it a desktop, laptop, iPad or smartphone – you can manage your money with minimal hassle.

Put simply, online banking means having access to all your bank’s services, at your fingertips, whenever you like. Think of it as the bank branch that never closes.

There are different types of online banking available:

  • Banks that provide online services. All major international banks now provide their customers with the option of managing their finances online. Branches are still available for in-person transactions.
  • Online only / digital banks. An alternative to the traditional model is the bank that operates exclusively online. The benefits of this type of banking is most evident in the reduction of banking fees, in part due to reduced overheads and other factors.

Why is Online Banking important?

If you are not already using online banking, it might be worth considering. Online banking not only means unparalleled convenience, but also more advanced means of overseeing your finances.

Here are just some of the benefits you could enjoy:

  • Skip the bank queues
  • Go paperless and do your bit to make your banking greener
  • Easily keep accurate records of your banking transactions
  • Access your accounts whenever you wish
  • Use e-signature features and eliminate the need to manage physical documents

Let’s take a closer look at what you can expect when you take your banking online.

How is Online Banking done?

If you’re wondering how to use online banking, you may be surprised by just how simple and intuitive it  can be. Most banks provide clear instructions on their websites for how to take your banking online. In truth, it’s more efficient for traditional banks if you do this – so it’s in their interest.

Features of Online Banking:

  • Bills, Bills, Bills. Finally, some good news about them. Online Banking allows you to pay bills with no hassle. You can also set up direct debits and standing orders from your device. 
  • Transfer cash to other accounts. Whether you need to move money between your own accounts or send cash to someone else, online banking makes it easy.
  • Check your bank balance from the convenience of your home. 
  • Keep abreast of your finances. You can check the status of any linked:
    • Mortgages
    • Loans
    • Portfolios
  • Apply for loans and new accounts without an in-person meeting.
  • Deposit cheques. Yes, it’s true! With remote cheque deposit options, depositing a cheque is as simple as taking a snapshot of it.

Is Online Banking safe?

While stringent security measures are taken to ensure that online banking is as safe as possible, the reality is that like any digital activity, it is still susceptible to interference. However, here we list some simple steps that you can take to ensure that you minimise your risks:

  • Do your banking at home. Public Wi-fi hotspots are not always secure. It’s not worth the risk.
  • Even if you are at home, log out of your account when you’re finished with your banking.
  • Choose a password that is complex enough to reduce your vulnerability. Make sure that it is not a password that you use for any other accounts.
  • Be on top of your account. That means checking your statement as frequently as possible so that you can quickly identify any illicit activity.
  • Check for viruses on your devices frequently by installing anti-virus software.

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