RA Site Visits Introduced by Zimbabwe’s Electricity Supplier

The Zimbabwe Electricity Supply Authority (ZESA) has established a Revenue Assurance Department that will inspect customer sites in order to counter power thieves. These steps are being executed in parallel to the deployment of 300,000 smart meters.

Telecoms fraud managers will see some analogies between the crime suffered by ZESA and the way fraudsters attack telcos. On one side, there is tampering with equipment at the edge of the network. A ZESA spokesman claimed they had identified 4000 properties in Harare where prepaid meters had been bypassed, allowing customers to receive electricity for free. On the other side, some crime involves staff collusion. Zimbabwe’s Herald reports that:

…a cartel of Zesa employees was clandestinely cancelling mega-bills of electricity users still on the post-paid billing system in exchange for a few hundred US dollars. After cancelling the bills, they then install pre-paid meters without Zesa’s knowledge. For this, they are paid between US$300 and US$600 by electricity users who want their huge bills cancelled.

You can read more about this story at The Herald.

Eric Priezkalns
Eric Priezkalns

Eric is a recognized expert on communications risk and assurance. He was Director of Risk Management for Qatar Telecom and has worked with Cable & Wireless, T‑Mobile, Sky, Worldcom and others.

Eric was lead author of Revenue Assurance: Expert Opinions for Communications Providers, published by CRC Press. He was a founding member of Qatar’s National Committee for Internet Safety and the first leader of the TM Forum’s Enterprise Risk Management team. Eric currently sits on the committee of the Risk & Assurance Group, and is an editorial advisor to Black Swan. He is a qualified chartered accountant, with degrees in information systems, and in mathematics and philosophy.

Commsrisk is edited by Eric. Look here for more about Eric’s history as editor.