The Star (Nairobi)

15 January 2013

Kenya: Embu M-Pesa Agents Conned By Safaricom 'Engineers'

Embu West District Security Committee has raised the alarm over theft from MPesa outlets.The committee chairman, acting DC Daniel Obudo said conmen pretending to be Safaricom engineers have swindled M-pesa agents of thousands of shillings.

He said they trick proprietors into giving them details about their businesses in the guise of upgrading the system then transfer the money to their accounts and withdraw it from other outlets.The conmen ask for the agents' ID number and PIN among other details.

Two MPesa agents at Kithimu lost Sh55,000 to conmen last Friday.One outlet by the name Soul Mate lost Sh38,000 while Siccinati Investment lost Sh17,000.Obudo said police have launched a manhunt for the culprits.

He asked the dealers not to give out their particulars to strangers to safeguard their hard-earned money.Obudo advised MPesa agents to exercise caution and report such incidences to the CID. Last February, MPesa operators in Embu lost Sh1 million to fraudsters.

Some suspects were arrested while computers and other gadgets were impounded. Robbers have targeted the outlets too.Thieves broke into and stole cash and phones from an MPesa outlet at the Embu bus stage, in what police suspect to be an inside job.

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