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HomePersonal BankingWealth ManagementSmall BusinessCommercialCorporate & InstitutionalAbout BMO

How we protect you

We work hard to protect your confidential information and privacy when dealing with us online. A secure login process and strong encryption are only the first steps in helping to prevent others from accessing your account information online.

Secure browsing experience

Extended Validation (EV) SSL Certificate

BMO is committed to keeping your information secure, and that requires us to continuously employ the latest security software to our sites. Our websites have been upgraded with extended validation (EV) SSL Certificates. EV SSL Certificates add another layer of protection for you while also providing a visual indicator to help identify our sites as legitimate. The web address appears green when using current browsers.

If you're using Internet Explorer 7 or Firefox 3.0.4 (or later versions), you will notice the following:

Photo of two URL address bars showing the difference between a legitimate BMO site and a fraudulent site
  • All or part of the URL address bar will turn green if you are on the legitimate BMO site, and will turn red and display a warning message if you are on a fraudulent site. (See Figure 1)
  • A gold padlock icon (indicating that you are on a secure site) will appear in the top right corner of the URL address toolbar (for Internet Explorer 7), and in the bottom right corner (for Firefox). (See Figure 1)

If you are not using the browsers listed above, you will not see the updated green address bar — however, your online session with us is just as secure as it has always been. To ensure you are using a legitimate BMO website you can check for the following:

Photo of a URL address bar displaying a https address and a gold padlock
  • A URL that starts with "https"; the "s" indicating that the site is secure and legitimate. (See Figure 2)
  • A small yellow or gold padlock displayed in the browser window somewhere, also indicating a secure site. The padlock can be double clicked to open a window outlining the certificate details for the site. (See Figure 2)

For more information about Extended Validation SSL Certificates, visit our list of frequently asked questions

Email encryption

Secure Email Encryption

BMO is committed to providing you with a secure banking environment. Our email encryption program scrambles your personal, financial or confidential information. It's transmitted and stored in a format accessible only to those with the correct password.

BMO will never request personal or financial information through unsolicited emails. For further assistance, contact our Customer Service Centre by calling the phone numbers on the back your credit/debit card or published on bmo.com or harrisbank.com.

BMO uses a free secure email service to protect confidential communications. The service is "by invite only" so first you will need to receive a secure email from us inviting you to join. Once received:

  • You'll open an attachment to arrive at our secure email service site.
  • Register with a username and password.
  • Read and respond to any secure email from now on by logging in to the website.
  • Compose emails by visiting the website https://ses.bmofg.com.

Visit our SECURE email help page.

Communicating with BMO


  • BMO now has the ability to correspond with you using email in a secure manner. With the Secure Email Service we can email you confidential information, and you can reply confidentially using an encrypted channel. This service provides you with a convenient means to contact us about subjects you would have previously had to come to the branch to discuss. To access our Secure Email Service follow the instructions in the Contact Us section at the top of the page.
  • BMO will never send you an unsolicited email requesting your account or login information. The same rule of thumb applies to most online company practices (emails asking for account or login information are part of a scam called Phishing).
  • Avoid sending confidential or personal information through standard email. Email is unsuitable for confidential information.
  • Always be sure to logout of your session and clear your cache when you've finished. Simply closing your browser window leaves your account vulnerable to intrusion.

100% Electronic Banking Guarantee for Personal Banking Customers

Our promise: We will reimburse you 100% for any losses to your Personal Banking accounts resulting from unauthorized transactions through Online and Mobile Banking.

To ensure reimbursement under this guarantee, there are a few steps you'll need to take to protect your debit card and your online banking password as outlined in our Electronic Banking Services Agreement.

These steps include:

  • Keeping your password confidential
  • Not storing your password with your debit card number
  • Advising us within 24 hours of learning that your debit card was lost or stolen; or that the confidentiality of your password was compromised

You may not be reimbursed if you did not comply with the steps listed above or if you knowingly disclosed your password or debit card and it resulted in losses.

For more information on how BMO protects you when you bank online, please review How BMO Protects You. You can also learn more about how you can safeguard your computer.

Commitment to CHIP Technology

BMO debit and credit cards are more secure than ever thanks to chip technology. Chip debit and credit cards contain an encrypted microchip that is extremely difficult to counterfeit. Your Personal Identification Number (PIN) provides even more protection.

Chip card technology has already been tested and implemented in over 92 countries in Europe, Asia, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East. The transition to chip card technology represents an evolution of the Canadian electronic payment system. Chip technology is designed to take security to the next level by making a safe payment system even safer.

BMO, along with other members of the Canadian payments industry, is leading the transition to chip card technology in Canada. The transition should be 90% complete by the end of 2010.

Canadian stores and services will be equipped with terminals that process chip transactions over the next few years. All chip cards will continue to have a magnetic stripe on the back of the card. This means that you'll still be able to use your chip card at merchants who don't have chip terminals and in countries that have not yet adopted chip technology.

Provide free security software

Secure Your Browser with Rapport

Download free security software from Trusteer for your browser today.

In order to help protect you from online fraud and identity theft, we are offering a free download of Trusteer's Rapport software.

Rapport is easy to install and use, and works with your existing firewall and anti-virus protection to further protect your computer. Rapport will:

  • Protect the connection between Online Banking and your computer against common online threats.
  • Ensure you have accessed BMO's genuine Online Banking site and not a website claiming to be Online Banking.

How do I know Rapport is protecting me?

Once you have installed the software, look for the Rapport icon that will appear near your browser's address bar.

The Rapport icon will appear in green when you are protected:
Photo of a URL address bar displaying a green Rapport icon
If the icon appears in grey, Rapport has not been enabled to protect the website you are visiting:
Photo of a URL address bar displaying a grey Rapport icon

If you require any assistance using the software please visit Trusteer Technical Support at www.trusteer.com/support.

Downloading and use of the Trusteer Rapport software is governed by the terms of the Rapport license agreement, which is provided with the software. Bank of Montreal makes no representation or warranty respecting the software or Trusteer's website. You agree Bank of Montreal is not responsible for any difficulties, consequences, costs, claims, damages or losses arising in any way whatsoever out of the downloading or use of the software.

Additional Security Measures

  • We will automatically log you out of a secure session left idle for more than 10 minutes
  • Firewalls to protect your information with us
  • We never send you messages asking you to provide us with personal or account information via email (see email scams and "phishing" for more information). Please keep in mind that email messages are not encrypted and therefore, subject to being intercepted and read by third parties.
  • If you use BMO's Interac Email Money Transfer, you'll be asked to click on a link that redirects you to a secure gateway, for more information click here.

BMO Financial Group is providing you with the information contained on these Security pages for your personal use only on the understanding that you agree that BMO Financial Group has no liability to you for providing you with this information, whether or not you rely on it. BMO Financial Group does not guarantee the accuracy or completeness of the information. Links from this Website to other Websites, or references to products, services or publications other than those of BMO Financial Group, do not imply the endorsement or approval of such Websites, products, services or publications by BMO Financial Group.

Learn more about protecting yourself online
Electronic Banking Guarantee
Our promise: We will reimburse
you 100% for any losses to your Personal Banking accounts resulting from unauthorized transactions through Online and Mobile Banking.
100% online banking security
Secure your browser with Rapport
Download free security software for your browser today. In order to help protect you from online fraud, we offer a free download of Trusteer’s Rapport software.
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