News & Views - Savantor

Are consumers ready for mobile phone banking?

Friday, 31 October 2008

One item in this edition reports that whilst consumers expect to use the Internet on their mobiles for things like including obtaining maps and directions, instant messaging, social networking, e-mailing and reading the news they are less convinced about using their phone for banking, with the majority preferring to carry out these activities on a PC. If you receive balance statements from a bank on your mobile it isn’t hard to see why as the size of the screen makes it difficult to understand what the message is telling you. However given the amount of phishing activity and id theft we are seeing at the moment it’s a wonder anyone even uses a PC for banking.

The industry is trying to overcome this in different ways – LTSB post a message on their online banking site which tells you after logging in whether they have sent you any messages last week and whether they will this week. IBM have just issued a USB device to help overcome this problem by creating a direct, secure channel to the bank's online transaction server, bypassing the PC.

A simpler solution might be to combine the mobile and the pc. If banks send free sms messages when a transaction occurs on your account overseas why not send one when on-line log in happens? If consumers are as wary about id theft as we keep being told then they might even pay for that service.

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