Individuals that specialize in online fraud and crime have now discovered a new way to hack into the bank accounts of consumers – a mobile bank heist through cell phones.

A number of malicious-based software programs are starting to gain an immense amount of popularity as criminals seek out new, creative, and potentially lucrative ways to directly attack the financial-services market. Examples of these programs include GM Bot and Acecard.

These programs are designed to steal the personal banking credentials from consumers when they log into their mobile banking program through their cell phone.

Currently, an exact figure has not been established on just how much money has been stolen as a result of this mobile bank heist; however, the damage is significant enough that it has caught the attention of the banking regulators within the United States and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

An agent from the Federal Bureau of Investigation that specializes in cybercrime, Richard Jacobs, has stated that the Bureau is seeing a variety of new malware that is aimed at the banking applications that mobile phone users utilize to access their bank accounts.

The purpose and intent of these malware programs is to steal the personal credentials associated with the bank account of the mobile phone user. As an assistant special agent that is placing a great deal of his efforts in handling these cases, Mr. Jacobs has now issued warnings to all sectors that specialize in the financial-services market. This includes banks and similar financial institutions.

If you are a mobile banking customer, it is imperative that you learn as much about this heist as possible to ensure that you are able to protect your account-sensitive information.

To date, the mobile heist attacks have happened on two different mobile operating systems. The first was the iOS by Apple Inc. The second was the Android by Alphabet Inc. Mobile phones typically come with a multitude of security protections built right into them; however, we are starting to see that these devices are still exceptionally vulnerable to mobile heists by hackers.

Mobile cell phone users should ensure that the devices that they use are consistently updated. This will help resolve any and all security flaws that could allow a hacker to remotely control the operating system and obtain sensitive banking information for the purpose and intent of theft.

In most instances, a mobile user will get the mobile heist malware on their phone by clicking on a text message from a source that is known to them or from clicking on an advertisement that is placed on a website. In most instances, the malware is downloaded and installed and remains in a dormant phase.

Once the mobile user opens their banking app, the malware is then activated and creates a type of customized overlay on the app. The hackers behind this process will then follow the movements of the user of the mobile device until they are able to successfully obtain their bank account credentials.

If you use a mobile device for on-the-go banking, simply install all manufacturer and operating system updates and protect your phone with an anti-malware program. In taking these steps, you will successfully avoid becoming the next victim of the mobile banking heist that is currently occurring.

For more information on how to bank safely online, contact Somerville National Bank today at one of our

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