Written by By Carolyn Lewis, CNN
More data than ever before has been compromised by cybercrime and identity theft, and mobile payments are no exception.
Recent security breaches have exposed credit card information, banking data and mobile payment data. In some cases, the compromised financial data included credit card numbers, expiration dates, security codes and more.
PayPal took the public and security community by surprise on Tuesday when they announced that their PayPal for Android app contained known, all-purpose malicious code called “Heartbleed.” This code was found to let hackers modify and secretly access the payment data stored on Android phones.
The breach affects millions of users across the globe. PayPal has issued a warning and issued patches and a software fix for Android devices that download the payment app.
If you have PayPal on your device and are Android users, immediately check the app to see if it has been updated with the new app. Update as soon as you can.
Apple Pay can also be affected, with the added benefit of being iPhone-only.
Criminals have also hacked into Visa contactless payments with high security to target iPhones and other mobile devices, according to a recent report by The Journal.
Victims of this hacking vulnerability were allowed to save their password to a secure place in the device, the report said. When they unplugged their phones and removed the connecting cable, the app would be inaccessible.
To protect yourself, download the latest version of your banks app for smartphone, download and install it immediately, then update with the latest patch. Otherwise, you may experience service disruptions, according to a statement from contactless payment website Wire
Also, keep a record of your phone’s unique serial number to identify it.