Safaricom now has the option for restricting SIM card swap at M-Pesa agents, unless you visit a Safaricom Shop or Care desk with your ID. This comes at the height of increased reports of fraud where customers have lost access to their SIM card leading to loss of money from both M-Pesa and their attached bank accounts.
What’s SIM Swap? This, it’s where you replace your SIM card incase it is lost. Safaricom has for long had the option of you doing it at an M-Pesa agent, making it easier for people who live in areas where they cannot access Safaricom shops to quickly access the service.
As it now seems, Safaricom may be looking to cut off the instances where agents may be used to illegally swap SIM cards, and give control to possible fraudsters.
Here’s how to block Safaricom SIM Swaps:
- Dial *100*100#
- You have to do it on your own line. It cannot be done on your behalf from another line.
- You can choose to leave this option to swap at agents open, and only dial when you receive an SMS of an attempted SIM Swap.
- After whitelisting, you can only replace your SIM card from a Safaricom Shop or Care desk with your ID, or by calling Safaricom.
- On Safaricom’s FAQ page, the company confirms this works for both Post and Pre-pay customers.
This move could possibly reduce the chances of being defrauded by bad players. However, it should be made a default thing, such that you shouldn’t be able to initiate a SWAP unless you call Safaricom, and unless you communicate and confirm your ID number. Even if you visit an M-Pesa agent, there should be a process of confirmation made from the telco so as to initiate the transfer.
Let’s wait and see feedback from customers on this new development.