How to stop sim swap fraud in Kenya.

Sim swap attack

To stop sim swap fraud, ensure that the two-factor authentication and verification are strong. To prevent fraudsters from using your phone to access your personal details. One can prevent the Sim swap by dialing *100*100# from your Safaricom number. No one can carry out the process on behalf of anyone else.

Therefore, to know if your sim card has been swapped the fraudsters contact you as a mobile owner. They then try to trick you to give them your personal details. If you give them all the details they gain control over your phone number and they might try to scam your close friends and relatives.

Additionally, if the scammers successfully swap your sim card they gain even the bank information especially if you use online banking. A bank must send a code via a text message to verify if it’s the owner who is accessing it. The code is sent to your sim card which is being swapped thus the code is accessed by the fraudsters who may withdraw all your money without your consent.

Fortunately, you can protect yourself against SIM swapping. It’s all about preventing scammers from finding out what passwords you use to access your online bank or credit card accounts. And it helps, too, to look out for the most common warning signs of a SIM swap scam

What is sim swap fraud?

Sim swap attack image.

When your sim card is swapped you have no control of it. You may not be able to make calls or do transactions with it since the ownership has been changed. The scammers trick you to give them your personal details so they can do the social engineering.

First, to ensure they change the sim card possession successfully they try impersonating you and call the service provider. They claim to have lost that sim card and request a new one thus successfully swapping your sim card and changing possession. Once they gain possession of your sim card. They are able to access all your activities such as text messages and calls which can be very dangerous.

Fraudsters are able to answer the security questions your mobile carrier asks by ensuring they trick you into giving them all the correct information by creating emails, malware, or social media. The fraudsters can even call you with a mobile number identical to that of your service provider. They ask questions that the service provider normally asks like personal details. By doing that they are able to provide any personal information your service provider representative asks when trying to determine if it’s you on the other end of the phone? 

Mostly, the fraudsters send you an email claiming to be your sim card’s service provider. This email ensures that you need to click on a link to keep your account open. When you try to open the link they ask for crucial personal details. Maybe the page even asks for your Social Security number. Once you fill this out and click “Send,” you give the scammers access to the information they need to track your mobile phone carrier into a SIM swap scam.

Warning Signs that you are a victim of a sim swap.

  • You can’t make calls or send text messages

This is the first sign of being a victim of a sim swap if your phone calls and text messages can’t go through. this means that your sim card has been deactivated and the fraudsters are using your phone number.

  • You are notified of activity elsewhere

If your service provider notifies you that your sim card has been activated elsewhere be wary of that.

  • You are unable to access accounts

If your login credentials no longer work for accounts, especially the bank. Most likely, scammers have changed your passwords and usernames, maybe after having taken over your phone number. Contact your bank and other organizations immediately to let them know.

  • You find transactions you don’t remember making

If you find notifications showing bank transactions you didn’t make. Most likely, you might be the victim of a SIM swap scam. Thus the fraudsters have accessed your bank account credentials and they are now doing transactions with your money. They do this by first stealing your phone number and using the information sent to it to access your account.

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