Tanzania

Tanzania considers pushing telcos to refund mobile money fraud victims

Airtel Money and Safaricom M-Pesa shops
Airtel Money and Safaricom M-Pesa shops adjacent to each other in Nairobi. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Dar es Salaam

Tanzanian authorities are in talks with the telecommunications regulator to consider whether there is need to enact a new law or ensure existing laws are implemented accordingly to control the rampant mobile money theft.

The minister responsible for communications, Mr Isack Kamwelwe told The Citizen newspaper that the government has received numerous complaints from the public against telcos, citing failure to take stringent measures against the theft.

He, however, did not immediately provide data on mobile money theft cases in the country.

“Whether to enact a new law or not is up for our experts to decide when they meet to discuss on how to tackle the problem,” Mr Kamwelwe said.

Urgent intervention

He further noted that despite the government’s effort in taking appropriate measures to control mobile money theft targeting subscribers, the situation has become so rampant, calling for urgent intervention.

“We wonder how these thieves can steal money from mobile subscribers, especially after deceiving them that they are improving their accounts.

"This means that they are either employees of the company or workers who used to work for the company,” he said.

He added that, in view of such discrepancies, the government was now looking for a solution, where the mobile companies would now bear the responsibility of refunding customers while they trace the criminals involved.

On Monday, the minister gave Vodacom Tanzania Plc 30 days to provide answers over cybercrime related issues in the company.