Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

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JustinR
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Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by JustinR » Thu Apr 25, 2013 10:28 pm

There are several portfolio aggregate tools, the biggest of which is probably Mint.com.

Do you trust Mint or similar sites with your Vanguard information?

There hasn't been any precedent of a financial account being compromised through Mint, so I wonder what Vanguard's response be if that were to happen. Would they honor their fraud protection even though you provided Mint with your VG account info?

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Van-Guard23
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by Van-Guard23 » Thu Apr 25, 2013 10:35 pm

I have the same security concerns with Mint.com which is why I am still unwilling to use and upload my data on Mint.com...and still tally up my net worth using my spreadsheets once a month. Call me a skeptic but I can't seem to get over the distinct possibility of having all my portfolio info in one Internet website, despite claims of bank-level security. Online banking is one thing...but aggregating all your info in one site is another.

Karamatsu
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by Karamatsu » Fri Apr 26, 2013 12:21 am

Do you trust Mint or similar sites with your Vanguard information?
No. In fact, if I could get away with it, I wouldn't even trust Vanguard ;-)

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Fri Apr 26, 2013 6:31 am

Karamatsu wrote:
Do you trust Mint or similar sites with your Vanguard information?
No. In fact, if I could get away with it, I wouldn't even trust Vanguard ;-)
What he said. Quicken does a better job, and I can keep my passwords "local."

enderland
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by enderland » Fri Apr 26, 2013 7:16 am

If more websites used 2-step verification services (Vanguard or Fidelity...) this entire question could be completely meaningless...

I guess I trust Mint.com because I do my taxes online with the same company which owns Mint and is recommended by the IRS.... not really a good reason, though.

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englishgirl
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by englishgirl » Fri Apr 26, 2013 7:59 am

Yes, I do.

Should I? Is the real question. I don't know the answer to that question.
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stan1
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by stan1 » Fri Apr 26, 2013 8:09 am

It's a risk/benefit tradeoff. I use Mint's Mac desktop app to monitor my credit card accounts. Transactions show up within minutes. If there is suspicious activity I'll be able to call the credit card provider immediately. This does require a little caution and a good memory as sometimes transactions show up with unexpected names or even dollar values before being finalized. As an example, restaurant charges show up without the tip then update about 12-18 hours later with the tip. Credit cards have statutory fraud protections.

Vanguard's fraud protections are much less clear and I have a lot more money at risk at Vanguard. I do not put my Vanguard (or TSP) account into Mint.

rixer
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by rixer » Fri Apr 26, 2013 9:48 am

Though I would like to, I'm not going to use it. The risk of getting your personal accounts hacked and stolen is greater than the benefit imo.

lwfitzge
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by lwfitzge » Fri Apr 26, 2013 9:52 am

I trust that my daily benefits outweigh the risk of essentially a black swan..others disagree, that's fine

sharke
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by sharke » Fri Apr 26, 2013 10:19 am

enderland wrote:If more websites used 2-step verification services (Vanguard or Fidelity...) this entire question could be completely meaningless...
2-step verification is certainly a good thing because it makes web based attacks more difficult, but I think what gets overlooked sometimes in these password discussions is that each time you give your password to another company, you are trusting that entity to store it securely.

So you are doing more than adding another site that is potentially vulnerable to web based attacks; you are also now vulnerable to internal attacks from within that company, e.g. simple theft by one of their employees, or a (detected or undetected) system-wide attack from an entry point other than the web that obtains many passwords, yours among them.
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serocs
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by serocs » Fri Apr 26, 2013 11:39 am

The main reason I stopped using Mint when I started making money (after college) is not based on whether or not Mint is secure or not, but on the way that I think financial institutions would handle any losses due to Mint being hacked. I have no reason to believe Mint is less secure than any of the banks, and due to its wide exposure, I would actually expect it to be somewhat more secure. Unfortunately, any web-based service can be hacked, however unlikely it may be.

The main issue arises from how your bank would respond to, for example, a illegitimate fund transfer caused by Mint being hacked. My understanding, which is admittedly limited, is that they would have no obligation to protect you in that instance. They could obviously decide to help out of the goodness of their hearts, but I am not particularly trusting of that and I'm not willing to expose all of my savings to that possibility.

So to answer your question, I trust Mint to do their absolute best, but if the worse were to happen, I don't trust the banks to help fix the situation.

Middle
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by Middle » Fri Apr 26, 2013 12:06 pm

I experimented with Mint, found it not very helpful, and got concerned about centralizing my account information in one place so I shut it down. Very similar to my recent experience with FutureAdvisor which I got curious about. But I think I will shut that down to.

It is pretty amazing how much we do trust the internet with our financial transactions though.

allsop
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by allsop » Fri Apr 26, 2013 12:28 pm

Using Mint is not in compliance with most, if not all, the various Terms of Agreement you have signed.

Sidney
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by Sidney » Fri Apr 26, 2013 12:41 pm

TomatoTomahto wrote: What he said. Quicken does a better job, and I can keep my passwords "local."
If you allow Quicken to access your accounts, isn't the PW still being passed to Quicken's systems?
I always wanted to be a procrastinator.

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PoeticalDeportment
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by PoeticalDeportment » Fri Apr 26, 2013 12:44 pm

We have a mint.com account that has access to all of our checking, savings, and credit cards. This allows us to track our spending and income in a very convenient way. I keep all of our investment account info in an excel spreadsheet. I suppose my trust for mint.com has boundaries.

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tractorguy
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by tractorguy » Fri Apr 26, 2013 2:09 pm

I use Quicken on my laptop mainly because of inertia (I started using it long before Mint was available) but also because it has more features and because it is inherently more secure.

One responder asked if Quicken stores passwords on their servers. I found out the answer depends (see here: http://quicken.intuit.com/support/help/ ... 83013.html )
I use direct connect for my Vanguard account. That password is only stored locally and is encrypted at least 2 times. Quicken encrypts it using the "password vault" password, My Quicken file is encrypted by Quicken using a my file login (a different password), and it is stored on a Truecrypt volume with yet a different password. If my laptop gets stolen, I figure I'll have a little time before the burglar's supercomputer breaks through this many passwords.

I was surprised to learn that my bank and credit account logins ARE stored on Quicken's servers because I'm using the Express Connect connection method. I'm not too worried about this but I may have to research setting up a direct connect method. I think this was a bit more hassle to set up so I didn't do so at the time (I didn't understand the difference between the connection methods).
Lorne

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Fri Apr 26, 2013 2:16 pm

Sidney wrote:
TomatoTomahto wrote: What he said. Quicken does a better job, and I can keep my passwords "local."
If you allow Quicken to access your accounts, isn't the PW still being passed to Quicken's systems?
There aren't "Quicken systems" in the sense of data stored somewhere in the cloud. You would have to access my physical PC and have both my Quicken password and the Quicken password vault's password to access any of the data. My accounts are only set up for downloads, so there is a limit to how much damage you could do.

Edited to add: tractorguy apparently does things differently to what I do, so perhaps some of his passwords are stored online. I also have Quicken on my desktop rather than a laptop, so you'd have to break into my house and steal it. I have a firewall whose job it is to not have you take over my PC remotely and security software to keep keyloggers away. In any case, I feel that there must be lower hanging fruit than my Quicken data if someone is looking to do bad things.
Last edited by TomatoTomahto on Fri Apr 26, 2013 2:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Cloud
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by Cloud » Fri Apr 26, 2013 2:16 pm

No, I don't trust them... Rather, I don't ever want to have to go that that rabbit hole if something should ever happen.

bourg
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by bourg » Fri Apr 26, 2013 4:08 pm

I use mint. I use paypal. All my passwords are stored in lastpass. All my data is stored in the cloud.

Google knows everything about me even without me using these services anyway.

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Meg77
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by Meg77 » Fri Apr 26, 2013 4:33 pm

I trust Mint. Mint uses the same 128-bit encryption and physical security that most bank websites use - Bank of America, etc. And according to their website their practices are monitored and verified by TRUSTe and VeriSign, and supported by RSA Security. Besides, you can't make any trades or transfers or initiate anything through or on Mint's website so I don't see any real reason not to trust it. All they save is your email address and Mint password. What's a hacker going to gain by targeting Mint? My net worth statement? Ok...this is why hackers target the banks and card companies themselves. At least I don't trust it less than I trust any other financial website.
"An investment in knowledge pays the best interest." - Benjamin Franklin

JustinR
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by JustinR » Fri Apr 26, 2013 6:15 pm

Meg77 wrote:I trust Mint. Mint uses the same 128-bit encryption and physical security that most bank websites use - Bank of America, etc. And according to their website their practices are monitored and verified by TRUSTe and VeriSign, and supported by RSA Security. Besides, you can't make any trades or transfers or initiate anything through or on Mint's website so I don't see any real reason not to trust it. All they save is your email address and Mint password. What's a hacker going to gain by targeting Mint? My net worth statement? Ok...this is why hackers target the banks and card companies themselves. At least I don't trust it less than I trust any other financial website.
The difference is that Mint has all of the usernames/passwords to ALL of your financial accounts. So they can gain more than your "net worth statement", in theory.
allsop wrote:Using Mint is not in compliance with most, if not all, the various Terms of Agreement you have signed.
The weird thing is that some banks, like Bank of America, have a similar service. They call it Portfolio and I believe it runs on Yodlee's software. Exact same thing as Mint.

So a bank is asking you to do the same thing that Mint is.

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PaddyMac
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by PaddyMac » Fri Apr 26, 2013 8:13 pm

I use the One-stop feature (yodlee?) which was added by Wells Fargo to Wells Fargo Brokergage to total our net worth, but I only let it access with passwords the WF accounts. I figure WF will stand by us since they added it to their system AND it uses the same login codes. But when I added Vanguard and other third-party accounts, I update the totals manually at the end of the month.

I'm sure companies like Mint do their best to protect clients, but I agree with a poster above that the banks are under no obligation to give you your money back if Mint is hacked. I always read stories in the newspaper about embezzlement at city governments etc., and wonder when it will be a Mint employee? As they say: "there's always a first time..."

digit8
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by digit8 » Fri Apr 26, 2013 9:23 pm

In theory, I think the only problem is, you're sharing your information with one additional entity, and additional risk is inevitable when you do so.

On a gut level, it feels riskier, and I won't be doing it. I'd love something Mint-like that would allow me the same benefits without requiring automatic access though. Some of the features seem neat.
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otbricki
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by otbricki » Fri Apr 26, 2013 9:57 pm

I just don't see the utility of consolidation being worth the potential black swan event. I'm nervous enough already having web access to my brokerage account.
Meg77 wrote:RSA Security
RSA itself was hacked, in a very major event in 2011.

It was an event that put a lot of major corporations at risk.

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/04/0 ... ey-did-it/

http://blogs.rsa.com/anatomy-of-an-attack/
Last edited by otbricki on Mon Apr 29, 2013 12:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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tylerdurden
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by tylerdurden » Fri Apr 26, 2013 11:53 pm

I use both Mint.com and PersonalCapital.com as aggregation tools for my accounts. Mint is used a lot more, but I find them to both be very useful. It is obviously risky to have the account and password information in one place, but that's where Intuit's reputation helps to calm my fears. And I am certain that each institution (i.e. Vanguard, JP Morgan, etc.) has their API designed securely so that external aggregators like Mint can only read data.

Of course, if Mint.com or PersonalCapital.com ever get hacked, I have a lot of passwords to change.
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Bitzer
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by Bitzer » Sat Apr 27, 2013 8:03 am

I am trying out three aggregation sites, yodlee offered by Fidelity, likeassets offered by WSJ and the bloombergblack service referenced by Mr. Ferri (above). I believe in taking reasonable risks in life (given benefits offered) and believe each of these services when they tell me my login credentials are safe with them. Fidelity (where my assets are) of course knows of these services and has a separate server system to give them access to read only information. I have to believe that Fidelity will recognize an "odd" transfer of assets request and contact me to verify. Heck, my local Fidelity representative used to call me when he saw me trading mutual funds for ETFs!

The problem I have in evaluating each of these services is that, with each, allocations for a given mutual fund or ETF are different. For instance, once service may allocate an investment in DBC to commodities, another simply to equities and a third to "other". That makes it difficult for me to get a proper "x-ray" of my holdings when I do my annual reallocations.

Ed 2
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by Ed 2 » Sat Apr 27, 2013 9:45 am

No, sometimes I don't trust even myself )). Seriously, there is non of safe websites in the entire world if you not going to protect yourself like never opening attachments on you email even if they looks like coming from your friends or never storing your passwords on your computer. I personnely keeping all my passwords in my head. Mint can claim whatever they can to prove that they are save,but this is just your call.and there many hackers can brake to any company computer even CIA if they'd like. latest victim yesterday "living Social" company,they been hacked big time and officials saying that " don't worry",sure....
"The fund industry doesn't have a lot of heroes, but he (Bogle) is one of them," Russ Kinnel

af895
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by af895 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 10:47 am

In Canada at least, it isn't a question of trust; it's one of liability.

Canadian banks have stated they will not cover any losses due to fraud if they find you've used Mint.com, regardless of whether or not the loss had anything connection to your use of Mint.com.

I suspect Mint.com is as safe as any bank. I'm not willing to take the risk of waiving my coverage though so I'll stick to offline personal financial management software. (Quicken, MS Money etc)

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tractorguy
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by tractorguy » Mon Apr 29, 2013 2:08 pm

TomatoTomahto;

You may want to check and see what type of Quicken connection you have for your accounts. If you are using a Express Web Connect method, Quicken is holding your data on its servers. See the description below from their help screens.

"Data

Express Web Connect is a one-way connection. Data is imported into Quicken, but Quicken cannot affect your transactions or balances in any way.
Access and retrieval of data is automated through the use of scripts and nightly aggregation. During aggregation, Quicken logs in to your online banking web site on your behalf. Generally this happens once a day and outside of business hours. Because of this, you may notice login activity on your online banking web site overnight.
Your login credentials are stored on Intuit-hosted servers. This makes updates faster for you.
Your financial data is stored on Intuit-hosted servers. This provides a more complete history of your financial transactions than is typical for data stored on financial institution servers.
We use state-of-the-art security measures to protect your login credentials and your financial data."


I'm not sure that this matters except to some banks in Canada.
Lorne

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TomatoTomahto
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Re: Do you trust Mint.com or similar services?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Mon Apr 29, 2013 3:04 pm

tractorguy,

Thanks for mentioning it. I checked, and all of my accounts are "Direct Connect." I don't upload my portfolio to Quicken.com. I think I'm safe unless someone breaks into my house and hacks my PC.

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