Boost for traders as new feature curbs dishonest M-Pesa reversals

Safaricom

In the new feature, a cancellation of an M-Pesa payment transaction is promptly followed by an automated call from Safaricom to the affected customer.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

Safaricom has introduced an approval feature for M-Pesa cash reversals, heeding to a cry by many customers hit by fraudulent cancellation of transactions before they are concluded.

In the new feature, a cancellation of an M-Pesa payment transaction is promptly followed by an automated call from Safaricom to the affected customer with a request to approve or decline the action as the cash is held by the service provider.

Approval of a reversal transaction means the funds are released back to the sender while in the event of a rejected reversal transaction, both the sender and recipient are required to prove their cases.

The new feature has been introduced amid cries by many customers, particularly traders who receive payments through M-Pesa only for their clients to reverse the transactions resulting in lost cash.

Players in the public transport subsector have for a long time borne the brunt of crooks who paid fares through M-Pesa only to reverse the transitions. This saw the crew of many public transport vehicles resist payments via M-Pesa, and instead stick to the traditional hard currency.

In the previous arrangement, there was minimal intervention during the reversal of M-Pesa transactions.

“Within a few seconds, you will be notified that the transaction reversal has been started, and an update will be shared within two hours. Safaricom will at this point begin engaging the second party, for the reversal.” Safaricom said in a write-up on its website.

Request for an M-Pesa reversal of cash sent to the wrong person is triggered through an SMS to 456. One is required to copy the whole M-Pesa message you received after sending money to the wrong person and send it to 456.

One would then receive a response from “Reversal" that the request for a reversal has been started, and that an update will be shared within two hours.

There is also an option to call the customer service team on a toll number 100 to reverse erroneous cash transactions.

In this option, one is required to dial 100 and select the option to speak to a Safaricom customer care agent who will then ask a few questions to verify your identity and the number you mistakenly sent money to. The agent will then initiate the reversal transaction and you will receive your money back within 72 hours.

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