6 simple tips for safe online and mobile banking

In today’s world, it’s easier than ever to manage your money with your mobile phone or laptop – from wherever you happen to be. 

However, this also makes it easier for someone else to access your account. While it’s important to protect yourself from scams, it’s also important to protect your account from potential threats.

Here are some tips to help keep your accounts secure.

1. Always use a strong password

When it comes to passwords, more is often better. Longer and more complex passwords tend to be more secure than short ones.

But how do you create a long password that you can easily remember? Try using a passphrase. You can make a passphrase by combining a few, random words together in a way that is meaningful to you.  For more information about passphrases, check out the Government of Canada’s guidelines.

When you’re creating or updating your password, it’s always a good idea to use a mix of uppercase and lowercase characters, numbers, and special characters (like @, %, and #).

While it might be tempting, you should stay away from using any personal information that others know about you, like your name, address, phone number, etc.

Should you keep your password the same or update it as time goes on? Typically, it’s recommended you change your password at least every 6 months. But if there’s been a security incident, or your account or device have been compromised, change your password as soon as you can.

2. Use two-step verification

Two-step verification makes your account more secure by adding another step to signing in.

You’ll enter your password (that’s step one), then you’ll get a text message or email with a code that you’ll need to enter (step two). Essentially, this means that if someone else knows your password, they still won’t be able to sign into your account.

Learn more about two-step verification and how to set it up for your Manulife Bank accounts.

3. Use biometrics (i.e. fingerprints, facial recognition) to sign in

Did you know you can sign into your Manulife Bank mobile app using your fingerprint or your face? Biometrics use your body to verify that you are indeed you – resulting in a secure banking experience.

Biometrics also makes signing in faster as you don’t have to enter in your password every time you want to do some banking.

Want to set up biometrics for your account? It’s easy. Here’s everything you need to know about setting up biometrics.

4. Watch out for public Wi-Fi networks

Free Wi-Fi networks at restaurants, coffee shops, and malls always seem like a great way to go online without using your monthly data, but these Wi-Fi networks aren’t as secure as your internet network at home and can leave your online activity visible to others.

if you’ve turned on the Wi-Fi service for your phone , you may automatically connect to a public Wi-Fi networks.  If you’re planning on banking from your phone or laptop while you’re out and about, it’s better to use your data service or wait until you get home.

But of course – it’s not always that easy. Sometimes, you’ll need to connect to a public Wi-Fi network. If you do, here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Ask an employee to make sure that you’re on the right Wi-Fi network.
  • If you’re using an internet browser, stick to pages that start with https instead of http. The ones starting with https are secured – meaning your activity can’t be seen by anyone else on the network.
  • Sign out of any online or mobile services when you’re done with them.
  • Use a VPN. According to McAfee, a VPN (or virtual private network) keeps your location, device details, and online activity secured even over a public connection.


5. Make sure you’re on the right website

When you’re getting ready to do some online banking with us, double-check that you’re on the Manulife Bank website.

Our URLs will always start with https – letting you know that your connection is secure and encrypted by us. Double-check the URL in your address bar to make sure you’re on https://www.manulifebank.ca  or https://client.manulifebank.com.

6. Keep your device software up to date

Our last tip is the easiest one for you to follow. Make sure that your computer, laptop, or phone are always up to date. If you use a firewall or an antivirus software, you should also update those services as often as possible.

We can’t stress enough how important it is to keep your account safe and secure. At Manulife Bank, we’re committed to protecting your personal information and your assets by using high levels of encryption and working with law enforcement and regulators.

If you think your account has been compromised, let us know as soon as possible. If your Manulife Bank Visa* card has been compromised or stolen, call us at 1-844-323-7053. If any other Manulife Bank account of yours has been compromised, call us at 1 877-765-2265.

*Trademark of Visa Int., used under license.