Given the level of malware we see evading virtually every anti-virus or security fix internet banking has never been less safe.
At present the most sensible course of action is to put a freeze on your credit file, switch the majority of your funds a non-internet account and use cash. If the only one who knows about your account is you and the bank and you make sure the bank will
only let you personally withdraw funds with additional id then you should be safe.
Given the record of banks in not recognizing customer's claims for losses you'd be foolish to assume you'll fare any better.
Advice to 'check your account often' is probably bad advice if you would normally do so online. You are merely giving fraudsters more opportunity to gain your credentials, or simply empty your account with a man-in-the-middle-attack.
My wife, who is no security expert, spotted an easy to exploit flaw in her own online banking which would allow a fraudster to easily empty her account - even though the bank uses a form of out of band authentication - SMS.(It really isnt out of band because
you enter it into your browser). You don't need her mobile or any hard to get fraud kit in order to exploit that system.
Recent nonce-sense with 'leading' UK bank's online security has highlighted the gaping flaws in most bank systems. Banks do not - according to Javelin, suffer the brunt of fraud - the merchants (and ultimately the consumers) do. Banks have little incentive
to provide better security, and generally appear to adopt the 'each as bad as the other' approach.
The move towards debit rather than credit will for sure be followed by a trend back to cash. Banks will only have themselves to blame.
Between banks, transaction processors and credit reference agencies an environment has been created which is so unsafe that i would generally advise people that if they can't afford to lose the money - don't internet bank. If they owe money they should only
ever use cash - the lower fees will offset the interest being paid on your debt. Cash is King.
I prefer it. I'm certain that most all others do to. Of course the only ones who really don't like it is banks, because moving and counting and exchanging it requires work, real actual physical work, rather than mere manipulation of digits.
The trouble is that banks are not very good at digits, they are better at the prettying up than the actual substance - and substance is something they lose sight of with every new 'product' that they cook up. Meanwhile they've lost track of what good old-fashioned
banking is all about - both on an individual scale protecting your money - and on a massive scale with the hot-air financial system which seems to be powered by something that smells like methane.
There is however some good on the horizon. Global warming, no matter the cause, will have effects which will change the global economic system anyway.
Governments will be printing money pretty constantly well into the future, you haven't seen anything yet. In the 21st century we'll live by a new set of numbers, where billions are like discarded decimal places within the endless budgets which will be required
to move cities, cultures and nations to higher ground and hopefully clean up as we go. There's business in recycling those cities.
Economic growth and consumption will not be a problem - there'll be plenty to do - we just need to focus on sustainable solutions. There'll be plenty of money splashing around soon enough that we'll look upon the bailouts as insignificant.
Until then - look after your money and if you can't afford to lose it - the honest advice is - don't give it to any bank that can.