Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Technology Enhances 401(k) & 403(b) Plan Access

We knew it would not take long before enhanced technology caught up with retirement plans; and now it is here. Many plan participants have been able to manage their own accounts through computer applications while at work or at home. Recently, a major plan provider enhanced its free iPhone and iPod touch applications to provide workplace savings plan participants access to retirement account information. Their more than 14 million 401(k) and 403(b) plan participants are now able to quickly view balances, positions and year-to-date history, including their personal rate of return.

These applications, and many more to follow by this provider and other retirement plan providers, will give many plan participants greater ability to manage and keep abreast of their 401(k) and 403(b) plans while they are not at work. The same technology is already available to many IRA account owners with accounts at banks, brokerage firms and other IRA custodians. Just be careful out there and watch out for schemes to get your passwords and other personal information. Your employer, bank, or brokerage firm is not likely to send you emails asking for that information or notifying you to change or verify a password. Your retirement could be at risk!

By IRA Technical Consultant Marvin Rotenberg and Jared Trexler
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