Beware of phone sim card fraudsters

    Eng. Francis Wangusi, Director General - Communications Authority

    Kenya’s Communications Authority has issued a warning to against mobile phone users sharing personal identification numbers (PIN) with strangers pretending to help them following the rising number of fraud cases via mobile phones.

    The Authority in a statement said it has received reports of theft of PIN through social engineering leading to SIM SWAP fraud.

    According to Authority’s Director General, Engineer Francis Wangusi, Personal Identifiable information refers to an information that can be used to distinguish or trace an individual’s identity, such as mobile money pin, national identity number, bank account pin, password, date of birth among others.

    In the case of SIM Card Swap Fraud, a fraudster usually makes a call pretending to be an employee of a mobile network operator. The fraudster further asks the unsuspecting mobile subscriber to share their personally identifiable information such as national ID number, mobile money PIN, or SIM card PIN. Upon security the information, the fraudsters proceeds to swap the sim card thereby gaining access to all sim services including mobile money transfer, mobile and internet banking , voice calls , SMS, data services among others that the original mobile user subscribed to.

    Mobile money transactions in Kenya has according CA reports exponentially increased with data from the Communications Authority of Kenya indicating that the total value of transactions in the second quarter of the 2017/2018 financial hiking to Sh1.7 trillion which translates to 13 per cent growth from the previous fiscal financial year.

    In exercising its mandate of sensitising and awareness creation on cybersecurity related matters, CA is advising the public to be vigilant.

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