Most companies are mining information of their customers and clients, as data is the new oil, with Forbes’ fear of internet surveillance in 2023 survey, showing that over 90% of people actively take measures to secure their personal data online. This means that the bulk of Kenyans are still not tech savvy, most haven’t ensured that their information is secure as they interact with different technologies.
In an era where technology has become crucial, it is important to improve your privacy. To ensure the privacy, Siri Yangu, a tech firm based in Nairobi, has developed “PrivPay” app in an effort to allow M-Pesa users to be able to send money on their mobile platforms while concealing their personal information from the recipient.
The value of the app is that recipients will no longer have access to the sender’s name and phone number. More often than not people have lacked physical cash and been forced to use mobile money, and little do they know that their information is visible from their transaction and can be used for the wrong reasons.
According to Sandra Mbuvi, Siri Yangu product manager, the product will be very handy in a situation where information such as the name and number of a mobile money transfer service user ends up in the hands of third parties
“In instances where one doesn’t have cash on them and is reluctant to send money because they’re uncomfortable sharing their phone number or name with the recipient, PrivPay comes in handy to help send money privately via M-Pesa. Users get to enjoy peace of mind that comes with knowing their personal information is protected and kept confidential when sending money to anyone,” she said.
PrivPay focusses on customers who are keen on their personal data privacy in mobile money transfers. Cases of spam by businesses, hacking by cyber criminals and stalking have been on the rise as a number of businesses store customer details.
The service will cost subscribers a total of Sh13 where Sh4 will go towards the M-Pesa system while Sh9 goes to PrivPay. The service will pick funds for transfer from a user’s M-Pesa wallet, acting as a payment transmitter. Once the transaction is successful, the sender gets a message from both PrivPay and M-Pesa while the recipient on the other hand receives two messages, one from PrivPay and another one from M-Pesa.
While the service is available for download for both Android and iOS, only M-Pesa users can access it at the moment, with the company behind it hoping to expand to Airtel Money and Telkom Kenya’s T-Kash in the near future.
“With the growing interest in consumer and data protection solutions in Kenya, I believe this is such a timely innovation that will resonate with many who are keen on data privacy and safety, especially in mobile money transfers,” said Ms. Mbuvi.