How the Housing Finance Group Whatsapp digital banking works
Mortgage lender Housing Finance Group (HF) has accelerated entry into the banking sector with the launch of a WhatsApp banking platform. In what is billed as a first in the Kenyan banking industry, the company teamed up with innovative digital solutions startup WayaWaya and Infobip to create a platform that would enable anyone who uses the messaging app to access banking facilities including loans.
HF Chief Executive Officer Robert Kibara said that the lender decided to become a full-fledged bank in 2018 and since the world had become more digital, it only made sense to grow it towards that end instead of growing the traditional motor and brick facilities. The new platform is christened HF Whizz WhatsApp.
What you can do on HF Whizz WhatsApp
- Virtual account opening
- Funds transfer between the bank account and MPESA
- Payment of bills
- Buying airtime
- Buying goods and services
- Applying for and receiving instant loans
How it works
- When on WhatsApp, the client is able to directly access their HF Whizz account. You’ve got to have HF as one of your contacts. You chat with the bank as you would a normal fried as you do the following.
- First save the HF Whizz WhatsApp number +254719597315.
- Open a chat and type SETUP.
- After the setup, the chat will flow seamlessly.
- Select the relevant option. For instance, when you want to send money Select Option 1.
- You will be prompted to enter the recipient’s mobile number starting with country code 254…
- You will then be prompted to enter the amount you want to send. The service currently supports MPESA.
- Once you confirm the amount, the system will seamlessly take you out of WhatsApp so that you can enter your Whizz Account PIN. It will then go back to WhatsApp.
- Your request is then processed and the recipient receives the cash.
In the words of Mr Kibara, HF aims to create a full-service bank on a phone by using the messaging apps that are widely used to cater for the digital generation.
How secure is the HF Whizz WhatsApp facility?
Security is a major factor when it comes to money and banking, knowing very well that cyber criminals are always on the lookout for the slightest loophole. Mr Kibara assures that all security measures are in place to ensure that customers are safe from cybercrime. He said that the password is not entered on WhatsApp itself but on a secure platform that pops up. He also said that the company has a security operations centre that tracks ‘information security’ (sic) across the bank all round the clock.
Are you ready for the WhatsApp banking as it takes shape, and would you use it?