The website is not the legitimate site of the Office of the President and asks users to share the information in order to redeem the grants, targeting businesses and students.
Syndicated Story By PesaCheck.
A website claiming that the Office of the President in Kenya is giving out grants to businesses and students is a HOAX.
The website contains the seal of the President of the Republic of Kenya in the top-left corner and a message below titled “Presidential Support Funds 2021 Edition”.
“The Office of the President aims at supporting small businesses and young highschool and university students. The Support Program gives the few selected students KES 6,000 for free. The few shortlisted small businesses owners are also given a boost of KES 9,000,” reads the message.
The webpage also contains an application form through which prospective beneficiaries can obtain the claimed funds. The form requires them to fill out personal information such as name, phone number, date of birth, and current address.
Clicking the “Submit Application” button opens up a new page with a message stating that the funds’ application has been processed and the transaction to the user has begun.
Users are instructed to click on the “Continue” button to proceed, which opens up another webpage congratulating the applicant and saying that the support funds have been approved.
“The cash will be sent to your mobile money account immediately after verification,” adds the message which contains what it claims is an application code.
The right-hand corner of the web page contains logos of money transfer and financial service providers’ including M-Pesa, Airtel Money, Equitel, Mastercard and Visa, among others. Below the logos is a timer indicating the window within which a user must complete the withdrawal process.
The withdrawal process involves clicking the provided “WhatsApp” button to share the message about the grant with 15 friends and five groups. This, the note explains, is meant to verify that the user is human and not a bot.
This sequence mirrors many phishing scams that are modelled with the sole purpose of mining personal information.
Scammers also use tactics similar to these to carry out click fraud, a common scheme that lures users to bogus websites with the promise of a reward.
Those who fall prey to such clickbait are also urged to share the offer with more people, which ultimately brings revenue to the operators of the fake offers, advertisements or campaigns.
The final stage of the verification process requires the user to click the “Complete” button and indicates that the funds will automatically be sent to their phone number immediately.