Millions of Brits provide financial support to their families overseas, with an average of £7.7 billion being sent from people in the UK to support loved ones each year1.
With money transfer apps becoming the new norm, it is now easier than ever to send money to family and friends back home. People can make payments from the comfort of their homes or on-the-go without having to enter a physical store or bank.
However, as with any modern apps, there are a few things to bear in mind in terms of online security whilst sending or receiving money from abroad. The experts at global cross-border payments company WorldRemit have compiled some top tips for any first-time sender.
1. Secure your email address
Most companies require an email address to set up an account, therefore it’s important that you ensure that your email is protected with a strong password to prevent anyone from gaining access to not only your emails, but any apps you use via this address.
Strong passwords include a combination of lower and uppercase letters, numbers, and symbols, it’s also important to ensure that you don’t use the same password for multiple applications.
2. Avoid public wi-fi
Although it seems convenient to connect to a public wi-fi to make a quick money transfer, the open access can be a security threat, allowing unauthorised users to intercept your sensitive personal information or gain access to your device.
It is recommended to avoid logging into online banking or money transfer apps, or managing your mobile wallet using a public network.
Instead, either waiting until a secure wi-fi network is available, or using mobile data, is the safest way to use money transfer apps while you’re out and about.
3. Research the app you’re downloading
Before you download a money transfer mobile app, try to find more information about the company online. If there is little to no online presence, stay away from it. On social media, always look for the verified "blue tick" next to the business name. Last year, WorldRemit launched a Transfer Tracker App which allows recipients of money transfers to track their funds. The app is free to download through the Google app store in a number of countries including India and Nigeria.
4. Keep your operating system up to date
Whenever your smartphone's operating system, internet browser or applications notify you that there are updates available, be sure to install them as soon as possible.
Many of these updates are fixing bugs or weaknesses in order to help you stay safe online.
5. Use a pricing comparison tool to get the best deal
The cost of sending money abroad takes numerous factors into account, for example, the exchange rate as well as any sending fees.
Be sure to use a pricing comparison tool to ensure you’re getting the best deal ahead of making the commitment and sending the funds.
A spokesperson from WorldRemit added: “Sending money overseas for the first time may seem like a daunting task, but it’s actually easier now than ever before.
“With WorldRemit, you can send in 70 currencies to more than 130 countries worldwide, in a safe and secure manner, and it can be done within minutes - it’s as easy as sending a text message.
“If it is your first time sending money to your loved ones overseas, we have customer service advisers available to help 24/7, to make your money transfer journey as seamless as possible.”
For more useful tips on staying safe when transferring money visit: https://www.worldremit.com/en/blog/tips-and-guides/money-transfer-app/