Digital banking: An easy way of social distancing amidst the coronavirus outbreak

Whether you turn on your TV or open a social media platform, one of the first things you will see is some sort of news or information regarding COVID-19. This novel coronavirus, which has created panic and fear across the world, has now become a part of daily conversations. And in response to this pandemic, governments, scientists and medical experts have suggested social distancing as the most effective way of containing its spread. 

Understanding social distancing

Social distancing, or self-isolation, is a public health strategy that entails broad measures like the closure of schools, public transportation, social gatherings, community celebrations, festivals and other public events to minimise contact between people. This will, in turn, slow down the spread of the virus. The idea is that by reducing contact with other people, you can lower the risk of getting infected or spreading the infection to someone else. 

Digital banking keeps financing needs on track

While work, travel and going about routine life is slowing down, digital banking facilities are making managing finances during such cautious times easy, convenient and stress-free. And financial institutions, such as HDFC Bank, are moving beyond traditional banking to make banking quick and safe at this time with the following value-added services.

1. Transfer funds

Need to transfer money to someone? With digital banking, you do not have to leave your home to issue Demand Drafts or cheques. HDFC Bank's digital banking services enables you to transfer any amount to anyone, anytime. You can choose from different options like NEFT, RTGS, IMPS and more. 

2. Access statements 

If you need a history of your transactions for a month or more, there is no need to visit the nearest bank branch to update your passbook. With a few clicks, you can view or download or even save your account statements in different formats (PDF, Excel, etc.) for specific periods, thanks to digital banking. 

3. Track your transactions 

Whether daily, weekly or monthly, you can use your smartphone or your laptop to track your income and expenses. Plus, for every transaction, HDFC Bank sends you an SMS with details of the transaction. So, if there's any fraudulent activity, you'll know instantly! 

4. Make investments 

Pandemic or not, you may have already set aside money for your investments and want to see your efforts through. Fortunately, you can still do this without having to go anywhere. Whether you need to open a fixed deposit account or invest in mutual funds, digital banking has made it quick and effortless to put away your money for a rainy day.  

5. Get financial help  

Very often, situations like the current one can leave people in need of emergency funds. But if you thought social distancing means being unable to access these funds, think again. HDFC Bank's NetBanking facility makes it easy to apply for a loan from your home. Even if you are looking for a loan against your mutual funds, you can secure it online. All you have to do is pledge your mutual fund investments, and almost immediately, your account will reflect an overdraft limit. 

6. OnChat 

With HDFC Bank's OnChat, you can chat on Facebook Messenger and use services such as payment of bills, phone recharge etc. The program is based on artificial intelligence (AI) and built on an intuitive Natural Language Processing (NLP). OnChat understands both Hinglish and English and is an all-inclusive solution for all your banking needs. 

Alternatively, if you have any queries or doubts that need to be resolved, you can log onto the HDFC Bank website, where you can pose your concerns to EVA - the bank's chat-based solution and get instant replies.  

7. EasyKeys

With EasyKeys, you can perform banking transactions on your Android smartphone using your phone keyboard. EasyKeys allows you to check your account balance, pay bills securely, recharge mobile/DTH and transfer funds while you continue to use other apps like sending emails or social media apps. This ensures you never have to go outdoors and put yourself at risk while performing routine errands.  

8. PayZapp

A mobile wallet available as an app on your smartphone, HDFC Bank's PayZapp allows you to make payments for an array of offline and online services without having to use your bank account number or credit/debit card. You can carry out a range of transactions like recharging your phone, sending money to friends, shopping for groceries online, ordering and paying for food, and more in just a few steps. You can earn cashback too! 

9. Missed Call Re-charge

At the time of social distancing, HDFC Bank's Missed Call Re-charge service can help you recharge your prepaid mobile phone quickly and easily. Instead of visiting the shop or downloading an app, just give a missed call to 73 08 08 08 08 whenever you want to top up your phone. It is as simple as that.  

Apart from these, other services can make life more comfortable at a time like this. For example, if you need to stop a cheque from getting encashed, you can do it from the comfort of your home. Log into HDFC Bank's NetBanking and request to stop the payment of the cheque. Or if you need additional protection at such times, get a new health insurance policy or update your current one without leaving your home. After all, better safe than sorry, right? 

Shop from the safety of your home

While malls and supermarkets may be on lockdown, you may still need essential home items - groceries, personal care and home products, among other things. Well, SmartBuy- an e-commerce initiative by HDFC Bank - offers a wide range of physical and digital products, such as books, fashion electronics, bill payments, entertainment, travel and more. So, you can get whatever you need without stepping outside your home. It even has exciting discounts and rewards! 

Practice social distancing and stay stress-free

At a time where the entire world is grappling with the coronavirus outbreak, worrying about your banking activities should be the last concern on your mind. With HDFC Bank's digital banking services, you can complete your transactions securely. And don't worry if you are used to the traditional banking system, HDFC Bank's online platform is user-friendly and simple to navigate. Hence, whether it's a critical banking need or a mundane one, protect yourselves by going digital.