The festive season is here with us and people are doing everything possible to survive and sail through this season. During this season, many people spend money on shopping, holiday trips among other things just to give meaning to the season.
Stats show that during this festive season, many ‘spenders’ often become ‘careless’ with how they transact, paving the way to fraudsters who end up conning them of their hard-earned cash. Some of the most common fraudulent cases occur on transactions done electronically and experts are warning Kenyans to be careful.
Mobile banking has gained prominence in Kenya. In fact, a phone is always the nearest bank branch that one can do all the transactions found in physical banking halls. Cases of fraud have hit the sector though. There have been numerous cases of people swapping SIM cards and stealing money from unsuspecting mobile money users.
This festive season, do not disclose your passwords or phone PINs to anyone. Do not be prompted to “send” back cash allegedly sent to your phone by “mistake.” Tell the callers to contact the service provider for reversal if any. There are people who have a habit of giving M-Pesa agents their phones so that they can help the “withdraw” cash which includes disclosing information about their PINs.
Many people, when they lose their phone, they only call the service provider for a replacement or the blockage of their SIM card. Nobody ever thinks of calling his bank and inform them that they have lost a phone. A phone is your bank and if you do mobile banking, when you lose the phone, please call your bank and inform them.
Credit cards and ATM Cards are other channels that fraudsters will be using to ‘get rich’ this festive season. Did you that these fraudsters often withdraw as little as one shillings so that you cannot suspect? Always confirm that message you receive from the bank and ensure that it is you who carried out the transaction. Most fraudsters work at night and the bank will send you a message, always confirm those message you receive from the bank at night.
Robbery at ATM points is on the increase across major urban centers in Kenya especially Nairobi. If you must avoid an ATM this festive season, please do and if not, please be cautious of your surroundings. Thugs are waylaying people from ATMs and robbing them at gunpoint. Before walking into an ATM, look around, take some time and see if there are some ‘scary faces’ hanging around.
That shilling counts. Do not just throw it away.