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Safaricom to Hide Subscribers’ Identities While Using Lipa Na M-PESA

Giant telecommunication company Safaricom has adopted the Data Protection Act 2019 in a bid to protect its customers’ personal information. 

According to a report by Business Daily, the telecommunication company will start blocking contact details of users when using Lipa Na M-PESA. 

The new model will be effective June 30, 2022. 

This follows claims that subscribers’ personal information were being sold out to advertisers or fraudsters. 

When making payments, Safaricom users leave their data with thousands of merchants and rogue business owners who use the information to send unsolicited advertisements. 

The information could also be sold to third parties. 

Safaricom CEO Peter Ndegwa PHOTO/COURTESY

As such, starting June 30, messages sent to business owners using the platform will only display the first name of subscribers and a few digits of their phone number. 

“At the end of June, phone numbers and full names of subscribers making transactions will no longer be relayed to partners. Only the first name will be passed along and the phone number of the subscriber making the transaction will be masked (obfuscated)

“For example, if a person named John Doe with a phone number +254(redacted) makes a payment the only data that will be passed along is [John, +2547XXXXX654],” a message sent to to merchants read. 

READ ALSO: Airtel Users to Pay Using Safaricom’s Lipa Na M-PESA Payment Platform

The Data Protection Act 2019 sets out restrictions on how personally identifiable data obtained by firms and government entities can be handled, stored and shared.

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