We recently wrote an article about M-Pesa, and it’s capacity to potentially change the core financial landscape of African small business. One of the main concerns raised was the unregulated nature of the platform, and it’s capacity to be exploited. In practise, the small transactions were to be a built-in defense against wide-scale fraud, but recent Social Media backlash has brought into the forefront the capacity for fraud on M-Pesa.
A user on Safaricom, Makena Onjerika, had a certain sum of her money erroneously transferred to a number registered to a man named Benson Kariuki. Benson, in an unusual feat, withdraw the money immediately after it was transferred. Safaricom then rejected Onjerika’s plea to have the money refunded.
The company has yet to comment on the issue, and further developments are withstanding.