How to reverse Safaricom M-PESA money sent to wrong number

One unfortunate thing that sometimes happens when sending money via Safaricom M-PESA is people finding out, after they have completed the transaction, that they have sent money to the wrong person – to the wrong Safaricom number; to someone they didn’t intend to send money to.

And we have all heard horror stories of people incorrectly putting in a number when sending money via M-PESA.

Then they realize too late what happened

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Sometimes the recipient plays games with them – even withdraw the money for their own personal use not caring who the money came from.

Safaricom has come up with features to reduce the chances of these things happening to their M-PESA users.

They have come up with features like Safaricom Hakikisha – giving users a delay (25 seconds) in which they can act quickly and stop their money from going to the wrong person.

But then, you find that there are cases, even with M-PESA Hakikisha enabled, where people still send money to the wrong number. And then trying frantically to make calls to (M-PESA customer care via 234 or the person who has received the money) get their money back so they can send it to the intended recipient.

That is where the Safaricom M-PESA reversal feature comes in.

You can use it to quickly reverse a transaction – save yourself a lot of headache and keep enjoying M-PESA services knowing that Safaricom is doing their best always to protect their customers’ monies and time.

Here is how it works: How to reverse M-PESA transaction

Say I wanted to send Kenya Shillings 1000 to the number 0704123456 and end up keying in 0705123456, here’s what will happen.

I’ll receive a text message from Safaricom M-PESA confirming I sent KSh 1000 to 0705123456 (the wrong number).

It is at this time that I will realize my money went to the wrong person – usually because just looking at the text you can tell the recipient’s name doesn’t match the name of the person you wanted / intended to send money to.

Knowing how to reverse an M-PESA transaction, I won’t let a lot of worry set in.

I’ll just forward the M-PESA SMS I received to the number 456 – which is free.

In the message itself, you might also find the instructions you need to reverse a transaction.

If you scroll to the end you’ll see a part that reads ‘… To reverse, forward this message to 456.’

Here’s an example: ‘NT37HQO25J Confirmed. You have received KSh 250 from DANIEL OTI WASONGA 0708123456 on 3/5/19 at 11:12 AM. New M-PESA balance is KSh 257. To reverse, forward this message to 456.’

Who can use this service?

The person who sends the money can request for a reversal

Save yourself a lot of worry by quickly forwarding the M-PESA message you receive to 456 and have your money returned to your account in full in mere minutes.

You can also use this service to reverse transactions when you buy too much airtime from your M-PESA account.

If you wanted to buy airtime of KSh 500 and you ended up keying in 5000, just forward the M-PESA message to 456.

The KSh 5000 will be returned to your M-PESA account.

Then you can actually put in the correct amount (500) the next time you try to buy airtime from M-PESA.

Here is an example text with instructions on how to reverse an M-PESA > Buy Airtime  transaction: ‘NHJ7YI56TR confirmed. You bought KSh 55.00 of airtime on 12/8/19 at 13:34 PM. New M-PESA balance is KSh 523. Transaction cost, KSh 0.00. To reverse, forward this message to 456.’

The person who receives the money can also use M-PESA reversal service

If you don’t want strangers calling you telling you they sent you money, just use this service.

The moment you get money sent to your account from a strange M-PESA number / name / user, just open the M-PESA message and forward it to the number 456.

This will save you a lot of headache dealing with:

  1. people who honestly made a mistake – and had their money ending up in your M-PESA account
  2. people who just want to mess your day telling you about their affairs – financial or otherwise
  3. pranksters
  4. idiots

Here are examples of text messages you will receive when you use the M-PESA reverse transaction service.

The moment you forward a text message to 456, Safaricom will send you an SMS that looks like this: ‘Dear Customer your reversal request has been received and is being processed. We will send you a status update within 5 minutes. Thank you.’

Upon successful reversal, you’ll receive the following SMS from Safaricom: ‘BRG9IWHY73 confirmed. Reversal of transaction NHJ7YI56TR has been successfully reversed on 25/6/19 at 13:32 PM and KSh 250 is debited from your M-PESA account. New M-PESA account balance is KSh 2.00.’

Have you ever been in a situation where you had to use the 456 M-PESA reversal service? Let me know in the comments section below.

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