Mobile Devices

Be Smart with your Smartphone

Smartphones have changed how we live, and how we bank. According to a 2015 report by the U.S. Federal Reserve, 39 percent of adults with both mobile phones and bank accounts utilize mobile banking, a 33 percent increase since 2013. Mobile banking apps are used by individuals and businesses to deposit checks by snapping a picture, access balance information, transfer funds, pay bills, and more—from anywhere, anytime. However, many people do not take adequate security precautions with their smartphones, leaving them vulnerable to possible identity theft and privacy loss.

What Can You Do?

  • Create a password or PIN to lock your smartphone or mobile device when not in use.
  • Do not give your password to anyone, and do not store it on your mobile device.
  • Use only City National Bank’s mobile banking app, or the official mobile apps provided by other financial institutions you do business with.
  • Do not access mobile or online banking through third-party apps or sites. If in doubt, contact your bank.
  • Download apps only from official app stores, such as the Apple iTunes Store or Google Play. Avoid downloading free apps from unknown sources, as they may install malware on your smartphone.
  • Keep your phone’s operating system updated with the latest security patches.
  • Avoid “rooting” your smartphone, as this may remove security features.
  • Install an antivirus program on your smartphone if available.
  • Beware of text messages and emails from unfamiliar senders containing links. These may be phishing scams aimed at stealing your personal financial data. Never respond to messages asking for your password or PIN. Don’t reply to unsolicited messages or voicemails.


Smartphones and mobile devices are now an integral part of social media activity, but it’s important not to reveal information that may put you at risk for fraud or theft. We recommend the following precautions:

  • Social check-in: When away from home—whether just out to dinner or on vacation—be careful about posting your whereabouts in your social media status. Burglars and other criminals have used Facebook and other social media platforms to find vacant properties to rob. If you're using a social app on your phone to check-in to a location, consider whether you want others knowing you're not at home.
  • Taking pictures: Most smartphones have built-in GPS, which may embed coordinates into an image when you take a picture. When you share these photos online, criminals can see where you took the picture.
  • Limit photo sharing: It’s common to take pictures with smartphones of family members and personal things, such as a home, car or other possessions. Sharing these online may reveal personal information that can be used by identity thieves.