OPay warns of impersonation and fraud as it commences physical address verification

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May 22, 2024
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2 min read
OPay app
  • OPay, a mobile money operator, has announced that physical address verification is required for all merchants using OPay Business.
  • This development, which will involve OPay staff visiting their location to assist them with the fintech process, is in line with the CBN requirements.
  • To avoid impersonation or fraud, the fintech has also advised merchants to be security conscious and verify the identity of any personnel who visit them for verification purposes.

“Our staff will carry proper identification (OPay ID Card, Lark Business Card, BD tool, or General Agent Platform) for this purpose,” OPay said.

Furthermore, OPay stated unequivocally that the company's representative(s) who will conduct the exercise will never request a password, OTP, PIN, or any other information related to their OPay Business account.

OPay's compliance with the Central Bank responds to the authority's demand for improved KYC processes, citing money laundering and illicit cash flow.

Recall that in April 2024, following the freezing of 1,146 bank accounts linked to unauthorised forex transactions, the CBN directed operators to restrict new account openings. 

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During the same month, the operators reportedly met with the National Security Adviser (NSA), the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to discuss lifting the ban on onboarding new customers. 

Consequently, PalmPay implemented facial verification recognition, Kuda requested that customers upload proof of their home addresses, and PalmPay has now begun physically visiting merchants to verify their addresses.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) recently announced that mobile money operators including OPay, PalmPay, and Moniepoint will begin onboarding new customers "in the next couple of months." 

However, the CBN is ready to implement measures to help tighten up onboarding and existing customers to prevent money laundering and illegal transactions. 

The CBN Governor emphasised that the directive was intended to be regulatory, given the sector's recent massive growth, and to keep an eye on money laundering and illicit flows. “Regulation is very critical in a sector that seems to have grown so incredibly rapidly,” he said.

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He also reiterated that, as of now, the CBN has yet to revoke the licence of any fintech organisation.


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