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Hide sensitive account data with discreet mode

Being in control of your finances means being able to bank wherever you are, whenever you need to. Whether you’re travelling home on the train at rush hour, or sitting in a busy cafe, keeping sensitive information like account balances and personal details away from prying eyes isn’t always easy in public. That’s why we created discreet mode for our phone and web app.

What is discreet mode?

Discreet mode lets you view your account and manage transactions as normal, while blurring out sensitive data like balance totals and transaction amounts, making it ideal for situations when someone might be looking over your shoulder.

There are two ways you can enable discreet mode once you’ve logged into your account:

  • Wave your hand in front of your phone screen (the proximity sensor, to be precise).
  • Press your current balance and click to active the Discreet Mode button, on iOS, Android and the web application.

Once discreet mode is activated, it’ll hide your current balance and all transaction amounts, including the value of your Spaces. Repeat the process in exactly the same way to return to normal view.

discreet mode gif UK

Created for confidentiality

As a digital bank, we’re always looking at the ways innovation can make banking safer and easier. Discreet mode is a solution that was born as a result of a real-life issue. While trying to check his account at the office via the N26 WebApp, one of our engineers realised that the amounts displayed on his computer were quite noticeable to any passing colleagues who happened to glance at his screen.

"We started thinking about how we could hide the numbers, which would be particularly useful to people who might need to access their bank in public while they work in a café or shared space, such as freelancers, for example." explains Dama, Lead iOS Engineer in the N26 WebApp team.

A little change made a big impact

Implementing the new discrete mode on N26 WebApp was surprisingly easy, and it took just a few hours. After its launch to the public, discrete mode proved to be hugely popular with N26 WebApp users. As a result, many people who had tried discreet mode on the WebApp expressed a desire to have the same feature on their phones.

For the mobile version, the iOS, Android and design teams first conducted research and user-testing inside the business with many N26 employees, to ensure the best user-experience. Along with a dedicated button, one of the outputs of this collaboration was to activate discreet mode by triggering the phone screen’s proximity sensor.

Discreet mode: a real innovation

"At the time it was created, we weren’t aware of any other banks who offered a discreet mode. This feature is just another example of N26 being a truly mobile bank– it’s designed to be used anywhere, whenever the customer needs it. With the discreet mode, you can check your bank balance in the subway, or in the middle of a crowd, without having to worry about privacy." said N26 Product Designer, Clemens Morris.

With discreet mode, you can also easily show your account to a friend, without having to reveal your financial status. Better still, it stays active from one session to the next on the mobile application. Have you tried discreet mode yet? Send us your comments and thoughts about the feature via our social networks @N26, and check out the rest of our blog to learn more about our latest products and features.

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