PHOTO/ COURTESY

Paris-based USSD technology specialist, Myriad Connect, is seeking partnerships with local financial institutions and mobile phone service operators in a bid to provide out of band authentication and SIM swap detection service to combat fraud in mobile financial services.

The new service will enable consumers and service providers to monitor the transactions in real time, according to Business Development Director for Africa Willie Kanyeki.

The move has been informed by increasing cases of mobile money fraud, which is the most common case of financial fraud. Statistics show that 57% of digital financial fraud in Kenya is through mobile money while 32% is through online banking.

Read: Central Bank Of Kenya To Start Auditing Mobile Money Transactions

In these, more than 70 percent of Kenyans have been victims of such activities that range from advanced cybercrime tricks to low-level phishing SMS and scam phone calls.

“Financial service transaction fraud in Kenya is costing banks billions and customers their life savings,” says Fabien Delanaud, GM of Myriad Connect. “While financial service transaction fraud is a global issue; Kenya has been a leader in the adoption of mobile and digital payments, which unfortunately brings with it a growing risk of fraud.”

Statistics indicate that active mobile money transfer subscriptions in Kenya currently stands at about 30 million.

Between October and December last year, mobile money had transactions worth Ksh1.8 trillion shillings

And while expansion of mobile money has been hailed as boosting financial inclusion, fraud has been a key concern for most consumers despite the mandatory SIM card registration.

“In the UK, fraud prevention technologies have helped stop 67% of fraud attempts, and with our out of band authentication and SIM swap detection service, we hope to replicate this level of success in Kenya,” says Delanaud.

Currently, the firm operates in 14 African markets.

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