Using Budgeting Apps With Your BECU Accounts
Budgeting apps and expense-tracking services provide useful tools that can help you manage your expenses. But they can also pose security risks and cause member confusion.
Updated (Originally published Feb. 16, 2022)
At the beginning of a new year, many of us resolve to get a handle on our finances, often turning to budgeting apps and expense trackers like You Need a Budget, PocketGuard, and HoneyDue. These services let you add, organize, and view all financial accounts in one place, using the aggregated information to track your spending, offer insights into your monetary habits, and provide budgeting tools.
Security Concerns With Third-Party Money Management Apps
For any accounts you want to link, expense trackers will ask you to provide your login credentials (your BECU user ID and password). Sharing this sensitive account credentials could compromise your security, especially if the service doesn't sufficiently encrypt your information. If they experience a breach, your information may be stolen, making you a target for fraud. Learn more about account fraud.
Research the company providing the app to make sure they're trusted and capable of securing your data. Before you connect your accounts:
- Review the app's privacy statement - specifically where it mentions sharing or selling personal data.
- Verify the app's encryption standards and enable two-factor authentication for added security.
- Always follow digital security best practices to keep your information and devices safe.
BECU's Money Management Tools
As a BECU member, you have access to several budgeting and expense tools designed to help you manage your spending and grow your savings. These tools are free and available to all consumer members enrolled in Online Banking.
- Money Manager: Easily manage all of your accounts - including those at other financial institutions - in one location. View your entire financial portfolio, track spending and identify trends, create a budget online, set timely alerts, calculate your net worth, track your progress toward reducing your debt, and more.
- BECU Envelopes: Identify and organize different savings goals in one single account. Create up to 12 envelopes, schedule automatic transfers into designated envelopes, and set targeted dates to achieve saving goals.
- Insights: In BECU's mobile app, see personalized insights and trends to inform your financial decisions.
- Account alerts: Customize text and email notifications to stay in the know about account activity for budgeting and security.
What To Expect: BECU Accounts and Budgeting Apps
Consider these common questions and concerns members have submitted regarding how their budgeting app interacts with their BECU accounts.
What you can do: If you've successfully linked your account to a trusted service in the past, and it's not working now, you may need to reconnect to the service by logging in to your account through their app or website.
Some members have expressed confusion regarding text messages and emails notifying them about attempted logins to their accounts. If a third-party service, previously successfully linked to your account, encounters issues accessing your account, you may receive a notification. Unfortunately, these messages may lack clear information about the encountered problem. Adding to the complexity, the way these services communicate with you in such situations is unpredictable. These alerts may resemble notifications from BECU's security monitoring and, alarmingly, could also resemble messages used by BECU impersonators in smishing scams.
What this means for you: Due to the challenge of verifying the authenticity of messages, we highly advise against clicking on links in text messages or emails, even if they seem to originate from BECU. Clicking on a message link and logging in to what appears to be BECU's Online Banking screen can result in the theft of your account login credentials. Learn more about fraud alert phishing scams.
Report Suspicious Messages
You can report social engineering attempts that you've received to our security team at email@example.com. This no-reply email mailbox is only used for ongoing monitoring and identifying trends. Please do not send confidential information via email. If you've responded to a communication that you think may have been a scam, it's important that you contact us.