Safaricom is planning to start hiding Lipa na M-Pesa subscribers’ contact information.
Safaricom soon begins to hide the contact details of Lipa na M-Pesa customers in an attempt to prevent the sale of user information to advertising or fraudsters.
The attempt is to limit third-party usage of customers’ data comes after it was revealed that more than a fifth of Kenyan businesses shared customers’ financial and personal information without their consent.
“The plan is to hide your number where it will display say the first two or three numbers and the last ones and block out the middle, just the way banks do,” said an executive at Safaricom.
The move is highly welcome in Kenya as many Mpesa users confess being victims of fraudsters or unauthorized marketing messages after a transaction is done.
According to Truecaller, a Stockholm-based caller identification software, Kenya ranks third among nations that receive the most spam messages, with an average of 102 per month per user.
Lipa Na M-Pesa, which was launched in 2013, allows companies to make and receive payments from any client or other business in Kenya.
“The mobile phone has today become the most preferred alternative to cash and its popularity only continues to grow. More than ever, an increasing number of businesses are discovering the numerous advantages of cashless payments resulting in high growth for Lipa na M-Pesa.
We continue to add more features and tools with a goal of empowering our business customers to grow and better manage their businesses,” said Safaricom chief executive officer Peter Ndegwa.
Consumers are increasingly making cashless purchases to avoid acquiring the extremely contagious coronavirus, and merchant payments through M-Pesa have increased, notably during Covid-19.