In Summary
  • Globally, the most common spam included local scams, telemarketing and debt collection calls.
  • More than 250 million people use apps such as Truecaller to identify callers unknown to them.

Kenyan mobile phone subscribers rank highest on the list of potential victims of scammers besides receiving many unwanted calls.

The findings of the latest survey by caller identity device provider Truecaller, reported in the Truecaller Insights Special Report: The Top 20 Countries Affected by Spam Calls, also showed that telephone etiquette has remained low amid an expanding mobile phone subscriber base.

South Africa, Nigeria and Egypt were in the top 10 of spam calls received.

“Kenya was a different case when compared to the other Top 20 countries listed in this research,” read the report released on Sunday.

“Scam calls made up a whopping 91 per cent of the reported spam calls.

"Scam calls are basically fraud attempts via your telephone, with scammers using a phoney scheme to swindle money from unsuspecting members of the public.”

Conmen have been making a killing from Kenyans through scam calls, with many giving instructions on mobile money operations that end up with the receivers losing money.

Such callers pretend to be officials or agents of mobile phone firms or other corporate bodies informing the subscriber that they are “winners” of a real or imagined promotion.

The fraudsters then access one’s personal data and even withdraw money by asking simple questions about the account holder — including their last top-ups, when they last used M-Pesa to send or receive money and the account balance.

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