Available On: Android, iOS
Keeping your finances in order with different bank accounts and online accounts like PayPal is tough. Especially if you’re also trying to juggle business accounts while keeping track of transactions and savings. Let’s just admit it, making sure you have the right amount of money in your account is sometimes very difficult. Now what if I told you there was a way to keep track of it all one little app that acts much like a bank account? The only thing is, it’s not a bank account and only keeps track of your accounts and tries to keep them in order. This technology can help business men and really anyone who has a struggle keeping things in order keep things in order. Mint.com is one of the best, if not the best way to keep track of all of your finances including transactions, bank accounts, online accounts like PayPal and a whole lot more.
Before we begin the review and how it all works, I would like to help you verify that this app is secure, this app is reliable and this app does not store your bank account credentials or credit card information, the FAQ off of Mint.com:
- Why does Mint need my bank login information (username and password)?
- Do you store my bank login information on your servers?
- Am I at greater risk of someone stealing my identity by using your service?
- Can Mint employees view my bank account numbers or credit card numbers?
- How can I protect my Mint account?
- If someone does manage to steal my Mint log in information, can they access my bank accounts and credit cards to make any transactions?
Why does Mint need my bank login information (username and password)?
We need your online banking user name and passwords so that we can help you organize and manage your accounts. We use this information to establish a secure connection with your bank, credit union or credit card company. This enables Mint to download and categorize your transaction information securely and automatically.
Do you store my bank login information on your servers?
Your bank login credentials are stored securely in a separate database using multi-layered hardware and software encryption. We only store the information needed to save you the trouble of updating, syncing or uploading financial information manually.
Am I at greater risk of someone stealing my identity by using your service?
No, as Mint does not require any personally identifiable information for you to create an account. Mint only asks for the following:
- Email Address
- Zip Code
At no time do we ask you for information that would be required for a hacker to steal your identity, such as your full name, bank account numbers, credit card numbers, billing address.
Can Mint employees view my bank account numbers or credit card numbers?
Your bank account and credit card numbers are stored securely. Your information may be seen by technical personnel in accordance with specified procedures and safeguards governing access in order to operate, develop and improve the Service.
How can I protect my Mint account?
- Don’t share your Mint password with anyone.
- Make sure that your password is complex, including both numbers and capital letters.
- Be certain that you have virus protection and a firewall on any computer you use to access Mint.
- Don’t install programs from people or companies you don’t know.
- Learn to prevent identity theft and identify Phishing attempts.
If someone does manage to steal my Mint log in information, can they access my bank accounts and credit cards to make any transactions?
No, as Mint provides a strictly “read only” view of your transaction information. Your online banking user names and passwords are never displayed after you enter them during your first session.
Now that that’s covered, we can continue on! As the FAQ says, Mint is a “read-only” service, so by acquiring your username and password of PayPal or Chase bank Mint will then store that in a very secure database. They claim they use the same security actual banks do, so you can guarantee that information is safe and locked away tight. Since Mint is a “read-only” service, all it’s going to do is pool all your bank statistic information into one service where it shows you your total balance and transactions you’ve made. Again, all of this information is read-only and just helps you keep track of everything in one spot. You’re going to have to manage your bank accounts on your own as this app will not allow you to do that due to different security reasons. I like having a read only service that allows me to keep everything in order and figure out what is going on with a touch of a button.
One of the cool things about Mint is that you can set up a savings goal and Mint will try and help you do everything it can to help you save up until that goal. You can also set up a budget with Mint, it’ll help you keep track of it. By touching your button page it’ll tell you how much cash you have left out of your set total amount. Say you put $50 in your account to allocate towards restaurants. It’ll tell you if you have $50 of $50 left for restaurants or if you have $6 of $50 left for restaurants.
This app is a really great way to keep track of your budget. It does it so simply and again, stores all this information in a secure read-only database. It basically means it’s for you to read and you only unless Mint has a safeguard looking at your account. Also, someone could look at your account (mint employee’s only) if you specified a procedure that you requested and that they notified you of. It is a very, very secure service. Mint.com is something that’s been around for quite a while but something that I feel not many people know about.
Mint also keeps track of your credit score through their “Advice” feature along with some other things that we’ll get to momentarily here. If you haven’t had a credit score in a while Mint links you to a website that offers a free credit score once a year (you can do this from the mobile app too, not just the website, meaning the Mint app not the FreeCreditScore app). That way you can keep your credit up to date and always know what’s going on with it.
One of the reasons why I love Mint is as it says, it keeps track of all of your financial information for you. Checking different PayPal accounts and bank accounts you have can be tedious and very time consuming. Mint pools it all together, it keeps track of every transaction you do on accounts Mint is attached to. Whether you use Chase Bank, TCF Bank or just PayPal, it shows every transaction going in and out. It shows when you get sent money, it shows when you receive money. Mint does a whole lot more than just that though.
Mint will alert you if it detects suspicious activity. When you spend money it detects how much money you spend on something like shopping. It then averages how much money you spend on shopping. Say you spend about $200 in shopping every month, if you spend $600 instead of your average $200 it’ll send you a priority alert telling you that you’ve been doing some “High Spending.” This is helpful in the case that your account information gets stolen so you’ll be able to know of any outrageous spending before it begins to get really bad.
Mint also does something else that’s really useful. The app allows you to put your income on the app and whatever purchases you make it’ll deduct from the income and then finally give you your cash flow after all of those expenses. You don’t literally put you income on the app, but say you get a refund and Mint detects that you got a refund it’ll add that to your income. If you get a payment from your boss via an online payment, it’ll detect that and add it to your income. Again, every time you spend money the amount of money you spent is then deducted from the income. Mint just does all of that information for you so you can easily see what your cash flow or total income is.
You can personally look at this income on the Mint app too. You can look at it by category or per transaction. It then shows you a detailed overview of all the money you’ve spent, what you’ve spent it on. If you want more details, just touch the transaction and it’ll open up a list of more details if there are more details available for you to look at. This really helps me keep track of everything as it’s hard keeping receipts in order and many different documents of transactions and balances. Then if I screw up and enter something wrong, everything is messed up. Mint eliminates the need for those documents and helps me keep track of it all without messing up. I never have to worry about missing a transaction again.
I know it’s a very touchy subject when adding bank accounts to an app that you’re not sure of. I can assure you that the RSA Security has approved of Mint.com. It is definitely something to get if you want to keep your financial situation in the palm of your hand. Best of all, it’s free and uses the same 128 bit encryption that your local bank uses!
Still not sure whether to get the app or not? I took a little time to try and dig up some testimonials concerning the security of the app as I know adding sensitive information like bank accounts can be a bit nerve-wracking.
A few Google Play reviews concerning Mint:
“Ties in with US Bank perfectly. Although, I can’t get the settings screen to work on my Nexus 7. You will need to use the website to access the more advanced features like setting rules for specific charges but once setup there, you will see the changes on the app version.” – Guy
“Perfect app if you are looking to control all your expenses, maybe a little bit more on personalization from our side, for example any option to select some monthly transactions stay out on your regular expenses, like you mortgage if you rent your house, if the rent pays te mortgage you don`t need it in your expense” – Jaime
“At first, I wasn’t sure if adding my account info into an app was a good idea. After reading the majority of reviews I decided to go ahead and create an account. ‘Signing Up’ for a new account took literally less than 2mins and once I launched this app I was amazed! Tablet UI is one of the best I’ve ever seen, and all of the options & customization offered is great. Once you set it all up, it will organize your finances in a simple and clear way allowing you to know exactly what/what not is being spent, or saved! Great App I recommend to anyone.” – Zachary
“After reading some of these reviews I took the plunge and downloaded mint. So far it’s working wonderfully. Everything is smooth and super easy to understand, even for my scatterbrained self. I would like to see more advice, but perhaps with only three months of history there’s not enough to base it on yet. I wish I’d found this app sooner!” – Amelia
“With this last update, I finally got the tablet UI and it is stunning. So smooth and slick, I love it. Thanks!!! Great app and I would recommend for all Mint users. Features I want that are in the web UI: Ability to see last month’s budget. Investment performance that the web shows. When changing categorization of a transaction, ability to make a rule, like on the web.” – Keith
“There are times when you read the app and it seems simple then it turns into a complete nightmare. This app however is easier and much more functional than I would have ever guessed. You can see all your accounts in one place and it updates regularly. It runs very smoothly on my galaxy tab 2 and is easy to operate and understand. I would highly recommend this to anyone for any type of account business or persona.” – Ken