Another win for Kenya and Tanzania as M-Pesa gets global GSMA mobile money certification. These two are amongst the first in the world to gain the new GSMA Mobile Money Certification, In a move to make mobile money safer and more transparent.
What are M-Pesa and GSMA?
M-Pesa is financial service platform, a world’s first mobile phone-based mobile platform. It offers money transfer services via its over 130,000 agents with users able to pay for goods and services at over 50,000 outlets. M-Pesa also enjoys partnership agreements with State agencies, banks, Saccos and foreign money transfer services where cash is sent directly to individual phone accounts across Kenya.
GSMA as a body represents the interests of mobile telecom operators worldwide, uniting about 800 operators with over 299 companies.
GSMA Mobile Money Certification
Safaricom’s ability to provide secure & reliable services, to protect the rights of consumers & fight money laundering and terrorism financing had proved resilient. M-Pesa successfully passed the GSMA Mobile Money Certification in an announcement made on 12 April 2018 by GSMA at the Mobile 360-West Africa event that also saw Côte d’Ivoire’s Orange, Telenor Microfinance Bank Ltd. (Easypaisa Pakistan), Tigo Tanzania (Millicom Group) and Vodacom Tanzania certified.
This Certification follows a three-year consultative process among operators in Africa, Asia and Latin America that sought to understand business challenges that resulted in the formulation of best practices for the identified markets. This certification is introduced by the fact that mobile money services are the new emerging trends in the market. Statistics show that about 690 million people in the world use mobile money accounts, with local M-PESA now at over 26 million users.
GSMA Mobile Money Certification aims to give customers confidence that a provider had taken steps to ensure funds were in safe hands. This move is designed to enhance consumer trust, as safe for commercial transactions, positioning the firm for more partnerships.
“The certification is designed to enhance consumer trust and accelerate commercial partnerships by setting a high bar to which all providers can aspire,” – GSMA chief regulatory officer John Giusti.
“Mobile money is directly advancing 13 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals by facilitating access to essential services such as health and education, providing employment opportunities and reducing poverty,” – GSMA chief regulatory officer John Giusti.
“The awarding of the GSMA Mobile Money Certification to M-PESA is a strong testament to the heavy investment we have made in people resources and financial investments, which have been critical to building such a robust service. This certification further reassures our customers of M-PESA’s reputation as a trusted, stable and reliable solution,” said Nicholas Mulila, Director – Risk Management, Safaricom.
M-Pesa launched in Kenya 11 years ago, back in the year 2007. At first, MPESA was a way to send money to informal women’s savings groups (Chama). The service now has over 26 million users and 148,000 plus agents in the country. M-Pesa is now offering a wide variety of payment options for example; bills payment, buying goods/services and even buying apps on google play store.
In Tanzania, where M-Pesa launched in 2008, there are now over 8 million customers using the service to transfer money, pay bills, take out loans and as a savings account.
M-Pesa recently launched Daraja API a few months ago, an improved APIs to allow third-party businesses to integrate payment services on their platforms.
How secure is M-pesa ?
Safaricom continues to improve the security of M-Pesa by deploying a team of fraud experts to enhance safety and reliability of the mobile money platform.