Apps That May Make Your Money Vulnerable

Starbucks

The Starbucks smartphone application allows customers to pay for their purchases with ease through the phone. Anyone can sign up, and it provides great perks (like complimentary drinks) for people that use the app regularly.

The risk

It was recently revealed that the Starbucks application available for smartphones saves user's passwords, usernames, and other sensitive information in the form of plain text. While most apps that hold this type of information on them use encryption, the Starbucks app simply stores the data without any security. Encryption helps secure a person's information by adding a layer of protection to their data, when there's no encryption a hacker could easily steal a person's information. This has alarmed users because that means anyone with access to a person's phone can easily steal the information from their Starbucks app. For someone that uses the same password for multiple apps, that can lead to identity theft problems and result in a financial disaster.

TabbedOut

TabbedOut is a convenient app you install on your phone to help you pay the cost for a bill you accummulate while at a restaurant or bar. You can also pay other people that have the app for a bill they covered. Store your credit card information on the app and paying your friends or merchant becomes easier and more convenient than ever.

The risk

The problem with TabbedOut is that if your phone is lost or stolen, you could be faced with an insane bill on your credit card statement. A thief could steal your phone and rack up a huge tab at a bar or restaurant, they can then pay their bill using the stolen phone and TabbedOut application. A thief could also give themselves a large payment through the phone and steal your money directly.

Facebook

In September of last year, Facebook started to allow its users to store credit card information on the social network directly. The purpose is to allow its users the ability to autofill their credit card information during checkout when buying anything through Facebook.

The risk

Anyone with access to your phone could start buying items through Facebook. Since most people remain logged in to Facebook all a person needs to do is find a phone with someone already logged in and they can start making purchases.

Another risk is for the people that get their Facebook account hacked. There are many gimmicks swimming around on Facebook that trick people to give up their login information. If this were to happen to someone with credit card information stored on their account, a hacker could figure out a way to take advantage of the data stored.