Over the last couple of days, if not weeks, some Safaricom customers have been experiencing heart-stopping moments whereby their M-Pesa menus have been popping up without their input.
From some of the complaints that this writer has sampled, the anomaly starts with a notification reading: ‘Your sim has played a tone’, with the user required to accept or decline.
Whichever option one chooses, the M-Pesa menu pops up and seemingly operates itself.
Others claim they wake up to find the M-Pesa Menu active on their screens while others experience the pop-up when they are using other apps.
As you would expect, some M-Pesa users have not been taking chances and have resorted to transferring their money to bank accounts out of fear of being hacked and having their accounts drained.
One victim of the hitch was popular TikToker and former Tusker Project Fame (TPF) contestant Alvan Love, who raised his concerns via Facebook.
He wrote: “Safaricom! No longer safe! I just found my phone trying to money by itself. It started with a notification ( your sim played a tone accept or decline I accepted then the next thing all the mpesa menu came up and started doing things by itself). Safaricom PLC What the hell is going on? 😱 I have since emptied it to zero.”
Another complainant wrote on Twitter: “Can’t believe someone tried to hack my M-PESA at 2 in the morning, I just started seeing a notification about my SIM card and then my Mpesa menu popped up. I quickly transferred my cash to my bank but what if I hadn’t been awake to see the notification?”
Another complaint dated January 30 read: “@SafaricomPLC why is my mpesa menu popping in my screen every time even after clearing everything???! Huh”
A third Twitter user tweeted on Tuesday: “@Safaricom_Care. hello I don’t understand what is currently going on with safaricom mpesa. Why is the menu ever popping even when I haven’t used it? Some are complaining that when it does so, they lose money??”
In response, Safaricom wrote: “We are terribly sorry for the inconvenience. We are aware of the M-PESA pop-ups that some of our customers have been receiving. This is already under investigation, kindly bear with us. For anyone who has lost money, kindly request them to get in touch with us.”
The telecommunication giant also responded to Alvan Love, explaining that the M-Pesa pop-ups are caused by a new development in the M-Pesa withdrawal menu.
“Hello Alvan, we extend to you our most sincere apologies regarding the experience with our M-Pesa service. The issue was as a result of M-pesa system menu push for the newly developed M-Pesa withdrawal menu. Your M-Pesa account was not accessed as there was no PIN entry request. Thank you. ^AO,” Safaricom wrote.