I’ve mentioned my fondness for Ally, the online bank. Been using it for a few years and do virtually all my banking with them. As one might expect, their mobile apps are damned good. This week they sent me an email about their Card Controls app. (Not sure if this is new or I’m just becoming aware of it) And for all I know, other credit cards have had these features for a while. Pretty sure my Chase VISA card does not.
Short version: the app “lets you take control of your Ally Bank debit card, so you can define when, where and how your card is used. You can: View transactions, establish spending limits, manage notifications and more.”
You can turn the card off and on. If I misplace my wallet I can disable the card until I find it and then turn it back on.
Use to be a pain in the ass to cancel a lost card only to find it 10 minutes later.
Establish spending limits and merchant categories. Transactions can also be controlled and monitored for specific merchant categories like gas stations, department stores, restaurants, entertainment, travel and supermarkets.
Not really clear on when one would want to do this. The jury is still out on titty bars.
Location-based controls. Using your phone’s GPS, the My Location feature can limit transactions to merchants located within a certain range of your phone’s location. You can also restrict purchases made in a specific region and deny international transactions.
I disabled international transactions. Like I said, this might be old stuff and I just noticed but I really like have this kind of control.