Alliance & Leicester beefs up security

17 March 2006
Alliance & Leicester has introduced a new online security system to make internet banking safer for its customers, the first time it has been trialled in the UK.

With two levels of security checking, the system first identifies whether people are logging on to the internet banking site from their personal computer.

If it finds that a different computer is being used, the customer will be asked a series of security questions to check the user is not a cyber criminal who has obtained the customer's log in details.

Then, once access has been permitted, the user will be shown a picture and phrase that was pre-selected to prove the site is a genuine one.

It is hoped that this will also prove a barrier to the practice of phishing, which involves a criminal pretending to be an official organisation by sending e-mails, but actually intending to steal personal details.

The system also picks up on any unusual spending patterns and checks purchases have been authorised.

The system is currently being used by the Bank of America in the US, where it "has been a proven success", according to head of internet banking at Alliance & Leicester, Andy Muddimer.

"We believe the new security measures will ease people's fears surrounding internet banking and encourage more people to bank online," he said.

The system was supplied to Alliance & Leicester by PassMark Security.

To read more about online banking, click here.

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