An Introduction to Internet Banking in India
Banks in India are providing online banking to catch up with a new breed of tech-savvy generation, demanding modern technology based services. This is fast changing the way you bank. Educated middle class youth with access to the internet is in the forefront of this technology driven revolution.
With most of the major banks providing Internet Banking or online banking, it is possible to do most of your banking from the comfort of your home or office. All you need is a computer with internet access. More than 22% of the internet users in India use online banking. If you are new to online banking, it is worthwhile to know some facts about it.
Benefiting from Internet Banking
You can access your account from anywhere by just logging into the bank’s site and entering your id and password. You can check your account information and perform transactions from anywhere via a smartphone, laptop, or any other Internet-accessible device.
You can apply online for a majority of the services such as loans, credit cards, savings accounts, and mortgages. Also, insurance products can be bought using internet banking.
Some banks provide online portfolio management services. Stocks, bonds, and other investments can be managed with online banking at your convenience, independent of a financial intermediary like a stockbroker. For example, through HDFC Securities customers can trade in the stock market or keep track of the portfolio.
Another area where online banking is making headway is in the Online Shopping industry. The market size of online shopping industry in India is estimated at Rs. 2000 crores and is expected to reach Rs. 7000 crore by 2015. One of the important reasons for this huge growth will be the increase in internet banking.
Online banking also helps you to pay your utility bills like electricity, telephone, and satellite tv. This is turning out to be a great service for those who are short on time.
Now you can also make insurance payments over the net. What’s more, you can even recharge your mobile through online banking.
Applying for Internet Banking
It is easy to apply for internet banking. All the new generation banks, major nationalized banks, and some private banks provide online banking. The registration process might differ slightly between banks, but overall it is quite the same. You can go through the terms and condition by visiting the websites of these banks.
Some banks, like HDFC Bank provide online registration for net banking for their account holders. For others, you can download the registration form from their websites. You have to fill the forms correctly and hand it over to the bank along with the required documents.
The banks will send you the required details and password to start online banking.
You can download the registration forms for online banking of popular banks:
- ICICI Bank [PDF]
- State Bank of India
- South Indian Bank [PDF]
- Bank of Baroda [PDF]
- HDFC Bank
- Union Bank of India
- Axis Bank [PDF]
Banks provide two types of online banking operations. In the first, you can only view transaction details. The second option covers everything including fund transfer. Depending on the bank, additional features might require the customer to fill extra forms.
Drawbacks of Internet Banking
The worst, your account cannot be accessed if there is a failure in the internet connection. Moreover, internet connection costs should be met by the customer while using the service.
Online banking does not free you totally from going to a bank. You need to go to your bank to deposit physical cash in your account. Such is the case to avail loan or mortgages. You can only apply online for it. To get it, you must go to the bank and interact with the concerned people.
Another disadvantage of internet banking is that a lot of personal interaction is lost. For a banker, we are reduced to just a customer, while for us the banker turns out to be a computer screen and not the elderly gentleman with a warm smile.
Being Safe while doing Internet Banking
Online banking can be quite risky at times. Cyber criminals are always on the prowl to make a quick buck by fraudulent means. But it can be safe if you keep in mind some basic things.
Always make sure that you do not give out your personal information to people you do not know over the internet, and remember to alter your password occasionally.
Internet banking has changed the way our country banks. A whole new outlook has emerged about the concept of banking. With an estimated 65 million internet users in India, the future of internet banking is huge. And banks are fast adapting to the changing trends and demand of the customers.