Bank Accounts

Joint Account

It is a best practice to have your bank accounts – especially the pension account – as joint accounts with your spouse/child(ren), though this may be a matter of personal preference. This also facilitates the release of Life Time Arrears and Family Pension as and when the contingency arises. The advantage of having a joint account is that even if a nomination has not been made, the surviving spouse/child(ren) can continue to operate the account under the ‘Either or Survivor’ clause, instead of having to go through the lengthy transmission process, which may require additional documents such as a copy of the probated Will / Succession Certificate, Indemnity Bond, Affidavit, NOC from each of the legal heirs, all of which can be quite a hassle and time-consuming.

It is now permissible to convert a single bank account for pension into a joint account with your spouse/person mentioned in your PPO as the one entitled to receive family pension, generally just by submitting a simple application to the bank.

DOs and DON’Ts

Banking for veterans often has to take into consideration planning for future expenses, which may include the marriage of children, increasing medical expenses (notwithstanding ECHS!) as well as everyday spending. Proper management of your savings bank account as well as judicious investment of the retirement corpus and monthly pension can help you ensure you get as much as you can out of your retirement savings. With online banking having become commonplace, however, there is considerable potential for banking fraud on senior citizens – especially those not very IT savvy – by criminal elements. While some of this has also been covered in the post on online security, the following DOs and DON’Ts will help you avoid banking fraud and keep your account more secure:-

  • Always type (or use the bookmarked link) to enter the URL of the bank’s official website into the address bar of your web browser. When you’re done using the NetBanking platform or Mobile Banking Apps, log out and close the browser window/App.
  • Click only on links in emails from senders you trust, as a good practice.
  • Download only the authorised Mobile Banking App issued by your bank from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The name of the bank should be mentioned as the creator of the app.
  • Activate and use 2FA (2-Factor Authentication), if your bank has enabled it, to log in to your account and make transactions.
  • Review your account statements and balance regularly online or with monthly email statements (or hard copies of the statement if you so prefer). Balancing your chequebook against your monthly statement can help you catch any fraudulent spending if it occurs.
  • Enable Transaction Alerts for banking. This will help you monitor your bank account. If a transaction takes place in your account which you have not made, you should immediately inform your bank. Furthermore, you can also set daily/weekly balance alerts if you do not get time to check the entire statement.
  • Keep unused cheques in a safe place.
  • Establish a personal relationship with the bank staff. If they know you, they may be able to help identify suspicious activity on any of your accounts more quickly and notify you immediately if they suspect such activity.
  • Click on random links you find online to reach your bank’s login page.
  • Leave your account logged in when going away from the computer, smartphone, or other devices.
  • Provide sensitive information like account numbers, KYC information (especially Aadhar/PAN card numbers), debit or credit card numbers, OTPs or PINs over the phone or email. Your bank will not call or email you for this information. If you have any doubt about the identity of the person who is asking you for information, hang up and call your bank directly.
  • Click the link of any email or SMS that seems to have been sent by a bank, even if it appears genuine, without checking the email address or SMS ID or the sender. Most of these are phishing messages intended to take you to a call centre run by scammers.
  • Fall for email messages or SMSs informing you of some unexpected financial gain, since these are almost invariably banking fraud. Generally speaking, any offer that sounds too good to be true is probably not.
  • Use the same User ID and password combination for all your bank accounts. If the credentials of any of your accounts are somehow compromised, all your other accounts will be at risk. Hence, always use unique passwords for every account and ensure that it is not something that fraudsters and scammers can easily guess. So, a password containing your name and date of birth is not a smart choice. For this reason, the use of a robust password manager such as Bitwarden is recommended.
  • Use public WiFi networks such as those found in airports for making banking transactions. If you do need to make a transaction, use your mobile data network.
  • Write a blank cheque.

MoUs with Banks

MoUs are being concluded by IHQ MoD (Navy) with various Public & Private Sector banks towards enabling the facilitation of best banking facilities to IN personnel/ pensioners, Agniveers and Naval Civilians. A list of banks and points of contact for queries may be viewed by clicking here.