|Updated: 5/27/2012 7:30 pm
||Published: 5/27/2012 7:25 pm
LITTLE ROCK, AR -- April Tucker loses her phone quite a bit. So she's nervous about mobile banking, even though the business function is growing everyday.
"Just having it on your phone is just an additional way for someone to hack into your information," said Tucker.
A recent experiment gives her more reasons to be nervous. The computer software company, Symantec, came up with a plan to lose 50 phones in four cities across the U.S.
They wanted to see what would happen when someone found the phones. So programmers installed special software to track the devices and what people did with them.
In half the cases, the finder tried to return the phone. But not before they did a little snooping.
"People looked at private pics and they tried to access a banking account, logging into a person's bank," said Symantec manager Kevin Haley.
43-percent tried to access banking apps, while another 57-percent went into a saved password file.
Experts say mobile banking is safe as long as you follow some simple steps.
They advise creating a password just to be able to use the phone.
"You don't want people to be able to get right into the phone," said American Bankers Association spokesperson Doug Johnson.
Bankers also advise making up different passwords for each mobile account tied to your money. Johnson warns you not to use the 'remember this password' option when it appears on your screen.
"It kind of defeats the purpose of the password," said Johnson.
There are now new apps just in case your phone does go missing.
"There's also some other great technology out there that would let you remotely wipe all your personal information and business information off that phone," said Haley.
There's even a feature called scream.
"The scream feature is going to make your phone let out a loud noise, a scream, so you can identify where you've left it," said Haley.
It could possibly even scare a thief into dumping it.
But if you don't have the extras, Johnson does offer some advice.
"You misplaced your phone, you believe you haven't taken proper measures, contact your financial institution," said Johnson.
Bankers point out financial industries have learned a great deal of phone safety by using the lessons they learned with online banking protections.