Frequently Asked Questions
How does Indie Money work?
You’ll start by linking your checking, savings, and credit card accounts to Indie. This is completely secure as you can read in our FAQ question below. Linking allows Indie to help you track how much you’re spending each day, week, month, and to give you a breakdown of where you’re spending. She can also help you figure out and track an appropriate spending target, which is basically a really simple budget for your day to day spending.
Why do you charge for Indie Money? And why can't I trust other free financial services?
Simply put, if a financial service is “free”, its owners are making money off of you in deceptive ways. Often times this comes in the form of “recommendations” that will actually destroy your wealth in the long term. Here are a few examples...
“Free" credit score apps and financial planning apps make money by (a) selling your data to marketers and (b) recommending financial products to you that they get paid for, even though those products are bad financial moves for you. Credit cards are the most common example. When you sign up for a "recommended" credit card through one of these services, they will make as much as $300 from the credit card companies behind the scenes. The credit card companies will pay the $300 because they know that they’ll be able to make even more than $300 off of you if you sign up. The “free” credit score and financial planning services know this is ultimately bad for you, but they do it anyway so they can quietly profit and keep calling their product “free."
Banks who offer “free” checking and savings accounts are often worse. The first stipulation is usually that you hold a minimum balance. If you stay above the minimum balance, the banks are able to earn higher interest rates on the money that they are holding for you while giving you 0% interest. You would be better off putting your money in an account that gives you higher interest. If you have less than the minimum balance, they charge you a monthly fee. Thus they are making money off of you either way. Even worse, banks have a second revenue stream that is similar to the credit score and financial planning apps: they sell you credit cards and loans that are often over-priced, bad for you, or both. In that scenario, “free” checking accounts are a way to build a relationship with you. Once you trust them, they sell you highly profitable (and expensive!) credit cards and loans.
A big reason we started Indie Money is to fight the deception in the financial industry. We never want to sacrifice your financial health for our gain, and we want our business model to be fair and transparent. That’s why we charge you a flat fee with no strings attached.
How do I know my financial information is secure with Indie?
Security is our most important feature, and we have taken a number of precautions to ensure your data is safe.
For one, we’ve hired an engineering team that deeply understands security. Our team has worked on secure services at Google, Facebook, and Yahoo, and our CTO has a Masters Degree in Computer Security from Johns Hopkins.
We use bank-grade 256-bit encryption for the storage and transmission of your personal data, and the bank-linking software we use has been used by over a million customers without a breach. Even if there was a breach, the data we have is encrypted so hackers wouldn’t be able to read or decode any of your information.
Lastly, we don’t store anything unless it’s absolutely necessary. For example, we don’t store your bank username or password on our servers. Once we get access to your transaction history, we completely forget about it.