CellTrust, a provider of mobile messaging and applications, has launched SecureSMS mobile banking and payment pilot in Africa to secure branchless banking for the under and un-banked.

CellTrust recently partnered with Nigeria-based Maxim-Pro, to enable their banking platform with the view to extending secure mobile banking and payment services to under and un-banked populations.

Within the first few months of operation, uptake is expected to be high for the new secure SMS/Text mobile banking program launched via CellTrust’s global secureSMS gateway. The pilot will allow end-users to make mobile cash transfers, payments and securely access other microfinance banking products.

CellTrust SecureSMS provides privacy on the mobile device via encrypted, tamper-proof process while enabling message sizes up to 5,000 characters. A remote wipe functionality that ensures users can wipe the handset if it is lost or stolen adding another critical layer of security.

CellTrust SecureSMS Appliance is a global enterprise appliance to offer secure SMS communication between handsets and enterprise applications and handsets with encrypted security in compliance with HIPAA, FISMA and Sarbanes-Oxley, ensuring that information is kept private and only delivered to the intended recipient.

Sean Moshir, CEO of CellTrust, said: “Microfinance banking institutions and cash agents will continue to play a major role in the successful implementation of the pilot and indeed the mobile branchless banking value chain. Securing the mobile branchless banking value chain against fraud is a major challenge for the region. CellTrust’s SecureSMS Appliance puts these concerns to rest by providing a solution that delivers advanced security and unprecedented reliability.”

Samuel Ucheaga, managing director of CellTrust of Africa, said: “We are experiencing a clarion call for more security, and in the case of mobile text banking or SMS banking, Central Bank officials are legislating requirements for SecureSMS with multiple levels of authentication and encryption along with a clear audit trail for compliance.”