5 cybersecurity tips when online banking
06 Mar 2024

5 cybersecurity tips when online banking


If you've only got a minute:

  • Be aware of how scammers work and take measures to protect yourself from falling prey to them.
  • Ensure you have strong passwords and 2FA set up where applicable for your accounts.
  • When using public Wi-Fi networks, be selective of what online transactions you do.
  • Stay alert and report any unusual or unexpected activities to the bank immediately.


Your passwords, phone number, date of birth, and identification number - these are just some of your personal information that you might use to log in to different accounts and carry out services. Likewise, they also function as key identifiers for how financial institutions, government services and other authorities know their users.

If scammers get hold of this information, they can use it to access your accounts for malicious purposes. As such, it is vital to practice good cyber hygiene and protect your personal data.

From securing your phone number to the setting up of strong passwords, taking these small but crucial steps to enhance cyber protection of your digital presence will go a long way towards guarding against online security threats.

Here are 5 cybersecurity tips to safeguard your personal digital details.

1. Create strong password

The first line of defence against potential cyber threats are your various passwords. Crafting robust passwords is an essential security measure so it does require extra thought.

While it may be tempting to follow the on-screen prompts to generate a complex string of characters, memorising them will be quite the challenge. Unless you have a very good memory, you need another method to create a strong password.

Avoid using cliché and weak passwords. The key is to create something that isn’t too difficult to remember yet safe.

5 cybersecurity tips when online banking

Having a strong password is like having a unique signature – both are difficult to replicate for any unauthorised use. What then, constitutes a strong password?

With modern technology, passwords that are too short, too simple, or too common, can be cracked by a computer program within a matter of minutes. Adding a mix of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols, will increase the complexity of your password. When done properly, it can result in the algorithm taking thousands of years (instead of minutes) to crack your password, making it more secure.

5 cybersecurity tips when online banking

You can also search “strong password examples” to get a better idea of how to create a secure password. Of course, do not use the exact one that turns up in your search results!

Always remember to change your passwords regularly and avoid using the same one across multiple accounts. This adds an extra layer of protection to your digital identity.

2. The importance of 2FA

Two is indeed better than one when it comes to safeguarding your accounts. Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) provides an additional layer of security on top of your password. An example is having to receive a one-time password (OTP) on your mobile device or security token as part of your log in process, which adds an extra step for identity verification.

This is especially important for accounts where you have money or credit card info stored, like e-wallets, hotel booking websites, airlines, and e-commerce websites, among others. It is important to note that when you opt to store your credit card info with merchants, there is a risk of potential data loss.

If you receive an OTP or 2FA notification that you are not expecting, it is likely that someone is trying to gain unauthorised access to your account(s). Alert the bank of this suspicious activity immediately and, change your passwords once you can.

DBS’ digital token functions as a 2FA and is included as a feature in your digibank app. When performing high-risk actions like increasing your daily spending limit or changing your personal particulars, you will be prompted to approve the transaction via your DBS digibank app.

In the same vein, when making an online transaction with your card, you may be prompted to provide further authentication via the digital token or an SMS OTP, before the transaction can be completed.

3. How to change your phone number safely

Scammers often pose as legitimate organisations and use phone calls and text messages to fool people into sharing sensitive personal information. They also try to hack your phone by getting you to download malicious apps or through phishing attacks. If this happens to you, changing your mobile phone number can help.

When you get a new mobile number, you need to update all your contacts. While doing so may seem like a no-brainer, there are some things to take note of so as not to compromise your security.

Start by syncing and storing your contact list in multiple locations to prevent data loss during the switch. Verify and update the numbers of crucial contacts, especially for work-related connections.

It is equally important to update your number with key service providers, such as your bank, WhatsApp, healthcare services, courier services, and ride share services.

It is especially important to update your banks with your new mobile number. This is because mobile payments like PayNow and DBS PayLah! are linked to your mobile number. Upon doing so, your old mobile number will automatically be de-registered from the linked banking services.

Now you might wonder why you need to unlink your old mobile number. This is because mobile numbers are sometimes recycled! If you have ever received a text from someone you do not know and it does not sound like a scam, it is likely that your number was previously used by someone else.

Since mobile numbers are linked to payment methods, it is possible for someone to transfer money to the wrong person if another person has “inherited” your old phone number.

Keeping your bank updated will also allow you to continue to keep track of your transactions on your accounts and be alerted in the event of any unauthorised transactions.

4. Exercise caution when using public Wi-Fi

It is incredibly tempting to log on to free public Wi-Fi to conserve data. But public Wi-Fi networks are more often than not, unsecured and using them puts you at a higher risk of being a target of cyber-crime.

With the right access, hackers will be able to see everything that you are doing on your device and from there, steal your private information. This includes any passwords or account information you might have keyed into your browser during your online session.

When using public Wi-Fi, avoid entering or accessing sensitive information, such as personal accounts or conducting financial transactions. If absolutely necessary to do so, opt to use secured Wi-Fi networks (that require a password), or mobile data instead. Otherwise, just stick to browsing the internet and refrain from logging into any accounts.

Before using public Wi-Fi, it is also good practice to verify that the network you are connecting to is legitimate. Use a VPN where possible and opt to “Forget This Network” when you have finished using it. You should also ensure your computer software is up to date, your data is backed up, and be extra vigilant when clicking on any links.

5 cybersecurity tips when online banking

5. Protect your credit or debit card

In the event where you may have accidentally clicked on a suspicious link, you can immediately secure your credit cards with DBS Payment Controls.

Access DBS Payment Controls via the digibank app where you can lock and unlock your card instantly at any time.     

With it, you can also:

  • Enable/disable online transactions
  • Enable/disable overseas transactions
  • Enable/disable contactless transactions
  • Enable/disable cash advance transactions
  • Set a monthly spending limit

This ensures that even if your credit or debit card details accidentally fall into the hands of a scammer, you are able to prevent them from using your card easily.

By integrating these tips into your digital practices, you not only fortify your cybersecurity defences but also navigate the online landscape with confidence and peace of mind.

When installing any mobile applications, only do it from the official Google Play Store, Huawei AppGallery, or Apple App Store to ensure that your application is legitimate. Enable auto updates so that you always have the latest version of the app.

If you notice anything amiss with your online banking experience, call us at 1800 339 6963 or (65) 6339 6963 from overseas at once. Bank online securely and enjoy a world of convenience at your fingertips.

Get the latest digibank mobile App now!


Disclaimers and Important Notice
This article is meant for information only and should not be relied upon as financial advice. Before making any decision to buy, sell or hold any investment or insurance product, you should seek advice from a financial adviser regarding its suitability.