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Stay safe online

The easy way to stay safe

Take a few minutes to read through this guide - and help stay safe when you go online.

Our entire service is designed to protect your security.

For example, we will only every ask you to enter random parts of your password and memorable date.

And of course, all information passed between the online banking website and your computer is fully encrypted. This keeps your personal details safe from fraudsters.

General security tips

Online security is just one part of staying safe. Our security advice centre has lots of useful information to protect you and your money.

Antivirus software

Anti-virus software works to protect your computer in two ways.

First of all, it detects and removes any computer viruses and spyware that have been installed on your computer.

Secondly, it helps to prevent those viruses and spyware from infecting your computer in the first place - and compromising your online security.

If you do have antivirus software (like Norton Anti-Virus, McAfee Antivirus, or Zone Alarm Anti-virus) update your virus definitions at least once every seven days to keep the latest threats at bay.

If you do not have antivirus software, you should consider buying and installing some as soon as possible.

Use a firewall

A firewall is a security application that sits between your computer and the internet, shielding your computer from unauthorised access.

Any computer you use to access the internet should have a firewall.

We recommend that your firewall is set to monitor incoming and outgoing internet traffic. This ensures that you have control over information that enters and leaves your computer.

If you have a modern computer you probably have a built-in firewall - Windows XP, Windows Vista and Mac OS X have one as standard.

Read your help menus for instructions on checking or setting up your firewall. If you prefer, you can also download a commercially available product.

Ensure your software is up-to-date

You should regularly check for updates to your operating system and your applications.

If you have a Windows computer, you should visit the Windows Update site once or twice each month.

If you have an Apple computer running OS X, you should run the Software Update tool once or twice each month. For patches and updates for any of your software applications, visit the software publisher's website.

Keep your security details secure

Remember that RBS International will never ask you to supply your complete password in order to access our internet banking service. We only ever ask for parts of your password.

Your security number and password are the keys to your online accounts and information. You should never share them with any one else - and remember to change your password as often as possible. This helps ensure it's secure.

Make your password memorable so you won't forget it, but ensure you choose one that will be difficult to guess.

Finally, never write down your password or PIN. However, it's fine to write down your customer number.

Don't get caught by fraudulent (or 'phishing') e-mails

Phishing is a fraud technique used to attempt to trick people into revealing their security number and password to fraudsters.

The fraudster sends out a fake e-mail that has been designed to look like it comes from a reputable source (like RBS International).

This fake e-mail asks for security details or directs customers to a counterfeit banking or commerce site. At the counterfeit site, the fraudster asks the customer to enter their complete security details - such as password, security questions, and user name. These stolen security details are then used to commit fraud.

If you receive an e-mail requesting your security details, do not reply and do not follow the instructions - even if the e-mail suggests that you need to take immediate action to stop your account being frozen or it indicates that you may incur a fine if you don't.

These are just tricks that the fraudster will use to manipulate you in to giving away your vital details.

Report fraud

If you suspect a phishing attack, call us on 0845 600 8212 (Textphone 0845 900 5960), or forward the suspect e-mail to

Lines are open 24 hours, 365 days of the year. The maximum call charge from a BT landline is 4p per minute. Calls may be recorded. Calls from other networks may vary.

Type directly into your browser

By typing directly into your browser instead of following links, you greatly reduce your chances of being duped by a spoof site.

Check for 'https' and the padlock

Genuine secure sites have addresses that start with 'https'. They also show a locked padlock symbol in the bottom section of your internet browser, or beside the website address.

Double-click the lock symbol

Double-clicking the locked padlock symbol brings up information about the lock that can help you confirm that the site is genuine. If the padlock is not within its valid dates, or has been issued to a website that you do not recognise, do not enter your security details and call us on 0845 600 8212. (Textphone 0845 900 5960). Lines are open 24 hours, 365 days of the year. The maximum call charge from a BT landline is 4p per minute. Calls from other networks may vary. Calls may be recorded.

Always logout of secure sites

Never leave your computer unattended when logged in to a secure session (like internet banking). Ensure you log-out properly when you have finished your internet banking session.

Computers in public places

You cannot be certain about the security of public wireless networks or computers in public places (like a library or internet café). So be very cautious about using internet banking services in these situations. Never change your security details while using a public wireless network or a public computer.