Internet banking security


Here are some guidelines for using internet banking safely and securely. We’ve included a list of common threats.

​Safe computing practices

  • Never, under any circumstances, follow links in an email to a sign-on page or pages that ask for personal information. Sovereign would never send you an email asking you for personal information, especially your password.
  • Be careful about clicking on unexpected ‘pop-up’ messages or opening email attachments from unknown sources.
  • Always access Sovereign's online financial services by starting up a new browser session and typing the website address directly into the address bar of the browser. 
  • Be careful about where you access Sovereign's online financial services. Other PCs, such as those at some internet cafes, may not have up-to-date virus protection installed. 
  • Make sure your online session, for example in Go Online, is secured by: checking that https:// is displayed on your browsers address bar; a padlock is displayed in the bottom right hand corner of your browser; a valid digital certificate has been issued to the site you are visiting. 
  • Once signed on, and before using the online service: check that the last successful sign-on time reported by the service is consistent with when you last signed on; look for any unusual or unauthorised transactional activity on your account. 
  • When performing financial transactions online, never leave your computer unattended while the session is still active. 
  • Always use the sign-off button when you have finished conducting your online financial transactions. 
  • Any printed material with personal or financial information no longer required should be destroyed in a manner that prevents this information from being used again.

Tips for securing your computer

  • Install anti-virus software on your computer. To get the most benefit from this software, keep both the software and associated virus definition files updated. 
  • Install a personal firewall. This software must also be regularly updated and maintained. 
  • Patch your operating system and applications with the latest vendor security patches. 
  • Install spyware detection software on your computer. Again, ensure both the software and associated definition files are updated. 
  • Take some time and build an understanding of the terms and conditions and privacy statement associated with performing financial transactions online via Sovereign's financial services.

A quick guide to computer threats

  • Phishing: An attack that combines various methods of deception to harvest an individual’s personal and financial information. An example of a ‘phishing’ attack is where a fraudster will send out an email to a large number of email addresses. The email may appear to be from the email recipient’s bank. The message in the email urges the recipient to click on a link to update their personal profile or carry out some transaction. Once clicked on, the link will then take the recipient to a fake website designed to look like the real thing. However, any personal or financial information entered on this website is directed straight to the fraudster.
  • Trojan horse: A software program that disguises itself as an application on an individual’s computer. This type of program does not replicate itself like a virus or worm, but it can be just as harmful. For example, one known Trojan horse promotes the idea that it will attempt to remove viruses from a computer, but instead infects the computer further. 
  • Internet scams: These can take many forms but one typical example involves scammers sending out spam emails suggesting they are looking for potential ‘business associates’ to take receipt of funds via their online accounts.  The scammers emulate or copy legitimate websites, to give a face and some apparent credibility to their fictitious enterprises.  They generally then request the funds to be sent overseas using an international money transfer in return for a small commission.  This represents a form of money laundering.
  • Virus: A software program that is able to replicate itself when a set of conditions has been satisfied. These conditions usually involve human interaction. A virus, once activated, can be destructive, performing actions such as overwriting the files of the local hard disk. 
  • Worm: A self-replicating software program, which attempts to spread to other computers, connected to the infected computer. As with a virus, a worm can be very destructive.
Disclaimer: The information contained on this site is of a general nature and is intended as a guide only, outlining some of the features and benefits provided by Sovereign's Go Home Loans. All home loans are subject to our home loan lending criteria. Early repayment adjustments may apply.  For loans with less than 20% equity a Low Equity Margin may apply. The lender is ASB Bank Limited via its nominee Mortgage Holding Trust Company Limited. The transactional account for Sovereign’s Go Home Loans is provided by ASB Bank Limited.

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The information contained on this website is general in nature and is not intended as advice. It may not be relevant to individual circumstances and before making any investment, insurance or financial planning decision; you should consult a professional adviser. Copies of our disclosure statements are available on request, free of charge.​