Starting this April 2021, things are going to change on the Mobile Money front with MTN’s ID directive for MoMo withdrawals going into force.
In an effort to arrest the fraud that has plagued the mobile wallet platform for some years now, MTN Ghana has found it necessary to enforce an old but often ignored part of the cash withdrawal process — showing your ID (as the account owner) to the MoMo agent for authentication.
To some people, the directive is an overreach by the telecom service provider, however, from my point of view, I believe this to be a step in the right direction… and I’ll tell you why.
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MTN’s ID directive is necessary for the future
It is the right thing to do
All over the world, in all forms of financial transaction, authentication comes into play — even in informal situations. Did a seller’s child come to you to collect some money owed? Chances are that you’d call the seller to verify if they’d sent anyone to come for money. You may even ask for the child’s name just to be sure. That’s authentication. It is normal and should be expected if there’s nothing to hide.
It is for this very reason that MTN’s ID directive should be welcomed by all as it marks a significant turning point, not only for the fight against fraud on MTN’s Mobile Money platform, but also — knowing how ahead of the pack MTN has always been — it will eventually become a requirement for other networks who may soon end up becoming a safe haven for the fraudsters trying to escape the telecom giants.
Guarantees the safety and protection of MoMo agents
We’ve heard every now and then, about how civilian customers have called on the police to help effect the arrest of a MoMo agent whom they suspected to be responsible for some money getting lost from their account.
This time around, knowing the customer’s full name, aside making a correlation between the picture on the ID and the face standing in your presence, is enough to help protect you from being beaten for no reason. Also, the records will be available to prove that the transaction was initiated by the account owner — hence absolving the Mobile Money agent of any wrongdoing.
People sometimes forget the transactions that they themselves authorized. It happens. Sadly, some memories only refresh after the harm has been caused to an innocent person. And this can be avoided altogether when there’s evidence to prove no other person than the wallet owner was the one who made certain fund withdrawals.
What MTN Ghana seeks to achieve with this directive is to have a platform that is safe for its cherished customers. The Mobile Money fraudsters are unrelenting and they keep coming up with new tricks by the day. Tracking owners of reported phone numbers has been quite difficult in the past — as lots of these criminals managed to register SIM cards with fake IDs.
With the new directive, their options are limited — meaning they will need to cashout with genuine IDs or transfer funds to a wallet on another network. This is why the telcos need to see the directive beyond just MTN and come on board to work together. Because what’s the use of living in a gated house with all the security setups when your neighbors are accommodating the criminals?
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This article is part of a series JBKlutse.com is developing to educate the public about MTN’s ID directive for MoMo withdrawals.
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