Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD), sometimes referred to as “Quick Codes” or “Feature codes”, is a communications protocol used by GSM cellular telephones to communicate with the mobile network operator’s computers. USSD can be used for WAP browsing, prepaid callback service, mobile-money services, location-based content services, menu-based information services, and as part of configuring the phone on the network.
I bet you are wondering how you could lose all your money from using this seemingly harmless system right?
Well, the Lagos State Police Command busted a syndicate that specialised in dispossessing victims phones for the purpose of getting their account details and making withdrawals without the account holder’s knowledge. The syndicate consists of about eight members, six of them are already in police custody which includes a bank staff who aids in the effortless withdrawal of the funds from customers accounts while two others remain at large.
While giving you the juicy gist behind this USSD “bruhaha” is important, tips on how you can effectively use USSD code without being at risk is “importanter“.
As long as you avoid sharing your pin or BVN with others then you are relatively safe, as in the case of losing your phone and being at risk of losing your money to these syndicates, its best to immediately deactivate all mobile banking on that device, inform your network provider that your phone has been stolen and start the process of retrieving your sim card. Do not forget to notify your account manager to immediately suspend your bank account to avoid stories that touch.