On May 14, 2020, Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) officers arrested three fraud suspects in Juja town. The suspects, Ian Kinanga, Jefferson Bosire, and Kevin Oroko were found with over 400 SIM cards, 8 identification cards, mobile phones, and laptops believed to be behind a string of fraudulent activities around the country.
Cases of criminals using other people’s IDs to register SIM Cards, swap SIM Cards or access bank records to steal money have been on the increase. Many people have been arrested after their IDs or SIM Cards were used to commit and crime and ended up going to prison for a crime they have no knowledge of.
The three are waiting to be arraigned to court as soon as investigations are complete. The DCI called on Kenyans to be on the lookout of fraudsters who are always scheming for unsuspecting victims mining personal information from them through phone calls or messages.
In order to curb fraud and protect its customers, the giant telecommunications company, Safaricom, has introduced a feature that alerts a customer when someone tries to register a new SIM card using their ID number. This will help the customer verify whether it is him/her trying to register for a new SIM or a fraud.
In the new feature, when one tries to register a new SIM card using a customer’s ID, the customer will receive an SMS through the number 707. The SMS will have two options; YES and NO. If the customer is the one trying to register a new SIM, they will reply with YES and if not, then they will press NO for the registration to be stopped.
Dear customer, a new number is about to be registered under your ID number. Please reply with YES to continue or NO to cancel the registration.
In a tweet, Safaricom said we are “introducing the new extra security feature that alerts you via SMS whenever someone tries to register a line using your National ID. Put a stop to fraud.”