Nairobi — A 21- year-old man was arrested Saturday, with a gunny bag full of sim cards and Identification Cards, which police said are used to swindle mobile money users in a SIM Swap syndicate.
The suspect who is a former staff at a mobile telecommunications company is also being accused of hacking into the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) database where he acquired personal data of 61,167 registered voters from a county in Western Kenya.
He was arrested by detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI).
According to the DCI, the suspect has been using the illegally acquired data to swindle victims’ online accounts after conducting a SIM swap.
In a recent incident, the DCI said, the suspect swindled an MPESA agent an unspecified amount of money.
The suspect is also said to have been masquerading as MPESA customer care attendant and lures agents into dialing unspecified codes to withdraw money from accounts of the unsuspecting agents.
“Before the agent realized that she was in a phony call, she had already lost cash from her money lending account. The money was sent to an MPESA account belonging to one of the fraudulently acquired SIM cards, before being transferred to an account at Cooperative bank,” the DCI stated.
The data found in his possession, the DCI said, contains names of registered voters, their ID numbers and dates of birth.
The suspect was arrested in Juja by detectives from the Crime Research and Intelligence Bureau, supported by Safaricom’s fraud investigations team and Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology security officers.