An Econet customer was defrauded $3346 from his Steward Bank and CBZ bank accounts after an Econet agent replaced the customer’s sim without his knowledge and permission.
The Econet agent is alleged to have been cheated by a syndicate of two people who claimed to be relatives of the defrauded customer that were seeking to replace his sim.
What really happened?
A customer traveled to South Africa and then the relatives of the customer approached an Econet agent to make a sim replacement under the pretense that they had been sent by the customer. The supposed relatives only had the customer’s identification number to validate their claim to the Econet agent that they were the customer’s relative.
After the Econet agent replaced the Sim card, the relatives then went on a spree of transferring a total of $3346 from the customer’s Steward, CBZ account, and various Ecocash wallet accounts.
When the defrauded customer discovered this, he went on to contact Econet Zimbabwe who then lodged a complaint to the police leading to the arrest of the relatives and the Econet agent.
The 3 men are going to appear before the magistrate today.
What does Potraz say about Sim card replacement?
It is mandatory for customers to produce a police report to replace their Sim cards.
Statutory instrument of 142 of 2013, the Postal and Telecommunications (Subscriber Registration) Regulations, 2013 states that:
6. (1) Where a mobile phone or SIM card is lost, destroyed or stolen, the owner of that phone or SIM card shall report such loss, theft or destruction in person or through a person duly authorised by him or her to the police and the service provider to whose network the owner subscribed.
(2) Any authorized person, who receives the report provided in subsection (a)shall provide the reporter with written proof of the report which shall be accompanied with a reference number.
In this case, the relatives and the Econet agent seem like they just walked into the Econet shop and did a Sim card replacement without a police report despite the existence of this law. This likely could have happened because recently I replaced my Sim card without a police report. So, Mobile Network Operators seem like they not implementing this law and Postal and Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of Zimbabwe is not enforcing it.
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