Is Wise Safe? All you need to know 2023
Wise is known as one of the most cost effective providers of international money transfers, serving over 12 million customers globally.
When it comes to sending money abroad, price and convenience are important. However, the crucial question for many customers will always be: is my money safe with Wise?
This guide covers all you need to know about how Wise is regulated, how they keep customer money safe, and whether or not Wise is a safe provider to use.
Safe service trusted by 12+ million customers
Excellent rating from customer reviews on Trustpilot
Authorised and regulated by the Central Bank of Malaysia and global authorities as required
Account verification, 2 factor authentication and passwords used
Anti fraud technology and teams to protect customers
Read our full Wise Review to learn more.
Is Wise safe?
Yes. Wise is a safe provider of online and mobile money transfers around the world. You can also open a secure Wise account to hold and exchange 50+ currencies, and spend globally with a linked debit card.
Wise is regulated by global authorities including the Central Bank of Malaysia, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the UK, ASIC in Australia and FinCEN in the US.
Year founded: 2011
Regulation: Regulated by the Central Bank of Malaysia
Number of customers: 12+ million customers
Services available: Transfer to 80+ countries, hold 50+ currencies in a Wise account
Card services: Spend in 200+ countries around the world with Wise international debit card
How is Wise regulated?
Wise is registered in Malaysia and regulated by the Central Bank of Malaysia as a remittance, money changing and e-money issuance business. Wise is also registered with regulators in countries around the world to comply with global financial services legislation.
One of the main ways Wise keeps customer money safe is through safeguarding funds. This means that whenever you add funds to your Wise account, Wise will deposit the money into a dedicated account at a top tier bank, or invest the funds in liquid assets.
The safeguarding process means that customer funds are always held separately to Wise’s own money for security reasons. In addition, Wise must hold a fixed amount of capital to fulfil the terms of its operating licences globally, and conduct regular stress testing to make sure the business is robust enough to protect consumer funds.
Is Wise as safe as traditional banks?
Wise is not a bank - however, for the services Wise offers, they are as safe as a bank.
Banks are often subject to more regulation compared to international money transfer companies, because they also offer extra services like credit cards and loans. For international transfers, Wise is as safe as a bank, but often cheaper and faster.
Is Wise a bank?
Wise is not a bank. Wise is licensed as a remittance, money changing and e-money issuance business, and for the services it offers Wise follows similar rules to banks. Like banks, Wise is subject to local and global financial security regulations, and has its own dedicated teams to protect customer funds and prevent fraud.
How does Wise keep your money safe?
Wise uses a broad range of approaches to keep customer money safe. Here are the key features:
Customer funds are safeguarded at top tier institutions
Licensed and regulated around the world
Dedicated 24/7 anti fraud technology and support team
2 factor authentication for your account and card
Transaction alerts every time a payment is made with your Wise card
Independently audited with regular testing to check and fix any vulnerabilities
Data protection processes in place
Is Wise safe to transfer money?
Wise is a safe provider to send international payments with. As well as being licensed and regulated by the Central Bank in Malaysia, Wise has a range of security measures in place to protect customer funds and ensure payments are safe.
Learn more: Wise money transfer review
Is Wise safe to keep money with?
It’s safe to hold funds in your Wise account. Whenever you deposit money into your Wise account, it is safeguarded in a leading financial institution, or invested in high quality liquid assets which can be easily disposed of to release funds. This means your Wise account balance is secure and is always held entirely separately to Wise’s own money.
Is Wise safe for large amounts?
Wise is a safe way to send high value payments. Transfer limits may apply and are set according to the destination country and currency.
Before you arrange a high value payment with Wise you may want to take a few sensible steps to make sure everything goes through smoothly:
Verify your account. If you have a new account you’ll need to complete a verification step to get started. You may also be asked to verify your account at a later stage, based on the transfer value and type.
Confirm the recipient’s bank details. Make sure you have all of the required details to process your payment safely. You’ll always need your recipient’s full name and bank account number, along with other region specific details like an IBAN, routing number or sort code.
Double check your transfer limits. Check your own bank’s transfer limit and whether there are any bank fees to pay for funding your Wise transfer through your bank account or card.
Is the Wise card safe to use?
Wise is a safe and regulated provider, with security measures in place on both cards and accounts to keep customer money safe. These safety features include :
Two-Factor Authentication (2FA): Wise provides 2FA for added account security. After entering your password, Wise will send a verification code via SMS or call, or you'll have to confirm your identity through the Wise app on a trusted device. This second step may take time, but it provides an extra layer of security.
Freezing and Unfreezing Option: If you lose your card, notice suspicious transactions, or simply want to put a temporary halt on its use, you can freeze your card via the Wise app or on their website. You can easily unfreeze it once you're ready to use it again.
Changeable Spending Limits: Through the Wise app, you can modify your card spending limits according to your needs. This is also applicable for team spending limits on Wise Business expense cards.
Instant Transaction Notifications: Receive immediate updates on all transactions to ensure you're always in the know about your spending and account status.
Card Replacement: If your card is lost, stolen, or damaged, you can replace it easily for a small fee. Your old card will either be blocked immediately or when the new one is activated, depending on the reason for the replacement.
Is Wise legit?
Wise is a legitimate, safe provider which already serves over 12 million customers around the world.
Compared with regular banks, Wise is typically cheaper. That’s because Wise takes a different approach to international payments, offering the mid-market exchange rate and low, transparent fees. Read our article to learn more on Wise fees.
Is Wise trustworthy?
Wise is a trustworthy financial service provider. It operates under robust regulatory frameworks not just in Malaysia but also across the globe. The company is regulated under Malaysian law and abides by the rules of global regulatory bodies, guaranteeing the safety of its operations and the integrity of its service. Additionally, Wise uses two-factor authentication and conducts meticulous customer verification, enhancing the security of each account.
Customers' deposits are safeguarded separately from Wise's operating capital and are held in leading institutions, including the reputable Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation Limited (OCBC Bank) in Malaysia. Your funds are always accessible to you and can't be used or accessed by Wise or any third parties during regular business operations.
Wise's security protocols also include frequent audits and stress tests to ensure the stability and safety of its system and use manual and automatic tools to detect and prevent fraud 24 hours a day, making it a reliable and trustworthy platform for managing your money.
Is Wise’s website safe?
Wise employs stringent security measures to safeguard your data and financial transactions. A dedicated fraud team and a security operations team vigilantly monitor the platform around the clock for potential threats or security breaches. They also utilise a bug bounty program via the platform BugCrowd, incentivising tech experts to identify and report potential vulnerabilities in the system.
The use of advanced asymmetric encryption only further strengthens the safety of Wise's website, ensuring all user data is securely protected and regular audits are carried out to verify that the website complies with the most recent and reliable security standards.
Is the Wise app safe?
The Wise app is just as safe as the website. It utilises the same stringent security measures, ensuring a secure environment for managing and transferring your funds. The app is constantly monitored by Wise's dedicated fraud and security operations teams, making sure your transactions are protected at all times.
To enhance user security, the Wise app offers the same two-step verification process as the website, allowing users to confirm login attempts via the Wise app itself or an authenticator app. For instance, each time you try to log in to your account on a desktop, you'll need to confirm the login attempt via the app on your phone.
Customer reviews on Trustpilot
Trustpilot is a handy resource when you’re checking out which international payment provider will be best for your transfer. Read reviews from previous customers to make sure you feel comfortable and are selecting a legit service.
Here’s what previous Wise customers say about the services on offer:
Trustpilot rating: Excellent
Total number of reviews: 141,000+
Where security comes up in the comments left on Trustpilot customer reviews, it tends to be because of additional verification checks required to keep Wise accounts safe. These verification steps are typically required by law, and would be necessary whether you’re sending a payment with Wise, your normal bank, or any other provider.
Can you get scammed on Wise?
Unfortunately fraudsters and scammers are active on all sorts of platforms including Wise and traditional banks, too. However, staying safe in most cases requires little more than a few sensible steps and common sense. Here are some tips:
Never share your account details or password with anyone
Don’t log into any site other than the Wise official homepage - check the secure site symbol before you begin
Don’t transfer money to anyone you don’t know and trust
Check your recipient’s account details before you make any transfer
Be aware of common frauds and phishing scams - these evolve and change over time, so staying aware is crucial
Can I avoid falling victim to fraud?
Should you be unlucky enough to fall victim to fraud while using your Wise account, you can report the issue to both Wise and the police.
To report fraud to Wise, log into your account and make your report there. If it's possible to stop the transaction, the Wise support team will help you.
If your payment can not be stopped or has already been received by the fraudster, you’ll need to report the fraud to the police. Wise can then pass on the transaction information to the police to support your case.
Is your personal data safe on Wise?
Wise protects customer personal data in line with Malaysian law and global best practice rules, and has a duty to keep any sensitive data safe. Information is collected and used to process transfers, comply with legal requirements and improve Wise services.
What personal data does Wise collect?
Wise collects personal data from customers which can include information you give them, and information collected from you, such as your IP address and the way you use Wise services. Wise may also collect information from third parties, for example, to help in the account verification process.
You can ask Wise not to contact you for marketing purposes by changing your marketing settings within your account, or sending the customer service team an email.
Wise may be required by law to retain some information about you. The length of time that data is retained will depend on the specific information and the applicable laws. However, Wise will not hold customer data for any longer than is necessary for practical or legal purposes.
How to get started on Wise?
To use Wise you’ll need to create an account, and depending on the type of payment you want to make you might need to provide paperwork to get started. If you’re a Malaysian national you’ll be able to open your account with your Passport or MyKad. If you’re not Malaysian you’ll need to use your passport along with your valid visa.
You may be asked to take a selfie holding your proof of ID for verification. In some cases, you’ll be asked for further identification and paperwork when you make a transfer. This tends to happen when sending high value payments, and is often required by law.
Once your account is up and running make payments online and in the Wise app:
Log into your account
Type in how much you want to transfer, or how much you need the recipient to get
Enter the recipient’s details - bank account number or email
Check over the details
Fund your payment using a card or bank transfer
Confirm and your money will be on the move
Wise is a safe currency exchange and international transfer provider, which is popular thanks to its convenient service and low overall transfer fees.
Wise has a number of features to keep customer money safe, including thorough account verification, 2 factor identification for accounts and card use, and 24/7 anti fraud controls.
Like banks and most other financial service providers in Malaysia, Wise is regulated by the Central Bank of Malaysia and global regulatory bodies everywhere services are offered.
Wise is a safe provider for account services and international transfers. Customer funds are safeguarded, and accounts are protected by thorough verification processes and anti-fraud technology. Read How Wise Works to learn more.
In Malaysia, Wise is regulated by the Central Bank of Malaysia. Wise is also authorised and regulated by other regulatory bodies around the world, including FinCEN in the US and ASIC in Australia.