Aug 1, 2021

Mawazo Writing Africa

Writing about the main

Suspect arrested after IEBC server hacked, over 61,000 identities stolen

The suspect, identified by the DCI only as Kiprop, is said to be the brains behind a high tech mobile phone scam syndicate that has been stealing millions of shillings from M-Pesa agents across the country.

The gang has been committing the offence using the personal and online identities of members of the public.

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The detectives said the suspect gained access into IEBC’s database and acquired the personal details of 61,617 registered voters from a county in western Kenya.

The data found in his possession includes the names, ID numbers and dates.

The suspect, the DCI said, fraudulently acquired the personal details of his victims while posing as a customer care agent of some of the country’s biggest mobile phone operators.

“Using the fraudulently acquired personal details, the suspects then contact different wireless carriers and convince the customer service agents that they are the true owners of the line. Upon successful sim swapping, the suspect is granted full access to the victim’s online accounts,” said the DCI.

Joint operation

It is believed the suspect, who previously worked for one of Kenya’s mobile phone networks, was arrested in Juja by sleuths from the Crime Research and Intelligence Bureau.

They were supported by Safaricom’s fraud investigations team and security officers from the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology.

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The man’s arrest came after the suspect swindled an M-Pesa agent out of an unspecified amount of money.

“The fraudster masquerading as an M-Pesa customer care attendant called the agent and lured her into dialing unspecified codes. Before the agent realised that she was in a phony call, she had already lost cash from her money-lending account.”

“The money was sent to an M-Pesa account belonging to one of the fraudulently acquired sim cards, before being transferred to an account at Co-operative Bank,” the DCI said in a statement.

During the raid by the DCI, detectives confiscated a gunny bag full of Safaricom, Airtel and Telkom sim cards.

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