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Internet Banking Essay

August 25th, 2009 Leave a comment Go to comments

Internet banking is the new method of banking using the new technologies available in the world today. Instead of needing to travel into a local branch of your bank, the Internet allows you to do a wide variety of useful things with your accounts. It can be accessed from anywhere that there is a computer with the Internet, and of course unlike bank branches the net is open 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

The services available online vary from bank to bank. Most of the general services are on all banking websites but the larger banks contain more control over your money. Here are some of the things that are possible –

• View your account balances
• Pay your bills (With the help of programs like ‘B-Pay’
• View records of transactions
• Transfer money to linked accounts with the same bank
• Transfer money to specially selected unlinked accounts
• Order printed payment reviews
• Pay for shares
• Check interest in your accounts
• Send money overseas
• Change your details
• Open new accounts
• Receive advice on handling funds

These are not all of the services available because each bank is different and in the competitive nature of banks they are always offering new features to attract investors. These features are open to both individuals and businesses (businesses have a few more options).

Everything has upsides and downsides and unfortunately so does online banking. First of all obviously it does not deposit physical money nor does it withdraw bank notes, which means you will still have to make a trip to the bank to do those things.

The fact that online banking is done over the Internet means that safety and security is a big issue.
Only 28 percent of Australian websites surveyed by Australia’s consumer watchdog had some kind of privacy policy. A further 72 percent would not say whether they would disclose private information to other companies – many people are receiving advertisements from companies that they had not done business with or even heard of before both through mail and electronically, for example through email. It is very possible to have your information stolen while it is being passed across the World Wide Web due to the latest surges in technology, sometimes even PIN numbers and user names are possible. In the near future, it is predicted that businesses will know who you are, where and how much money you have to spend etc. Every time you use electronic devices like credit cards, mobile phones, the Internet, even signing up for a competition your details are being recorded. A new science called biometrics will be able to identify people with retinal scans, fingerprints, voice or DNA samples. While being secure it will not be too anonymous – which is why there are fears of moving into an Internet/electronic age of banking.

On the other hand there are the obvious reasons why net banking is becoming popular and banks are becoming more and more online-aware – It is so much easier being able to access accounts from literally anywhere in the world at anytime than finding a bank branch and visiting it during normal business hours. The whole process also gets done much quicker than by physically talking to a teller and waiting for them to process the service.

All of the things that can be done by a teller can be done on the website of your bank and there is plenty of help and tutorials to help, and so far the services are listed in the first question but there will be many advancements in the new technology when more banks begin to cross to electronic methods and start to compete for online customers.

In order to first begin to use a net banking service from your local bank, you must first have access (preferably regular access) to a computer with access to the Internet. When you go online direct your browser to the website of your bank (you should check with your bank what the website is).
Most banks will have a large link to net banking or otherwise use the search option to find it. There is a short process involved to receive a user name and password for online banking – follow the onscreen instructions, it usually involves a phone call and 3 working days to mail online details to you.
Once you have logged on into your bank’s main account area there will be several options available to you – an outline of these were covered near the start of the document. These options will come under different headings as links, simply click on them to take you to the list of features available.
As an example, BankWest (at www.bankwest.com.au) has four options at the top of the screen – daily banking, where you can select accounts with the bank, bill payments where you can pay your bills with funds in your accounts, service center containing lots of options regarding your accounts (like printouts, statements, details, orders e.g. new cheque books) and my profile where you can change your personal details.

Despite doing your banking over the Internet being somewhat of a security issue it is obviously much easier and faster than talking to tellers and your local and branches. It is using new and advanced technology, which is fast evolving meaning that this method of banking will accelerate much faster in the coming years.

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