Safaricom Accused Of Selling Subscriber Data

Farai Mudzingwa Avatar

An ex-Safaricom employee suggested that the biggest mobile network operator in Kenya sells data to micro-financing companies and betting agencies.

Last year, the MNO was taken to court by a customer who alleged the company had sold personal data of 11.5 million customers to betting companies.

It has now come to light that one of the ex-employees of Safaricom who was arrested for being in possession of the database wrote a statement to the police at the time acknowledging that this was a common practice within Safaricom.

The statement written to the police claims that Safaricom sells data to different service providers:

After receiving the data and asking about the source, I was made to understand that it was part of a project where Safaricom was developing a business model to monetise MPESA and customer data with select [?] especially in banking and financial sectors.

According to iAfrikan, many Kenyans have always wondered “how it was possible for micro-lenders and betting companies to not only have their mobile number and also their names so they could send them personalized marketing messages.”

Interestingly, earlier this year it was reported that the company is seeking out suppliers of location tracking data. This data is valuable because Safaricom can then sell it on to marketers and other third parties.

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