For many years now, i believe more than half of Ghana's population do not know of PayPal. The rest of the population having knowledge about it too keep asking themselves the ultimate questions of all. Why is Ghana not on PayPal? Why hasn't any banking Institution in Ghana entered into an agreement with PayPal to provide merchandising services in Ghana? Why has no Ghanaian retailer created an on-line presence that will accept payments via PayPal? I bet you were asking yourself the same thing. Some few campaigns were created over the years using social media to help whitelist Ghana on PayPal. I know you are itching to find out why the campaigns failed and why our peaceful Ghana is still not on PayPal. Let's not get ahead of ourselves but make certain things clear first.
What is PayPal?
PayPal is a service that enables you to pay, send money, and accept payments. You can register your credit card or debit card with your PayPal account. You can pay by simply choosing PayPal at checkout, logging into your PayPal account, and confirming your payment.
PayPal was established in December 1998 as Confinity, a company that developed security software for handheld devices founded by Max Levchin,Peter Thiel, Luke Nosek and Ken Howery. PayPal was developed and launched as a money transfer service at Confinity in 1999, funded by John Malloy from BlueRun Ventures.
In March 2000, Confinity merged with X.com, an online banking company founded by Elon Musk.Musk was optimistic about the future success of the money transfer business Confinity was developing.Musk and then-president and CEO of X.com, Bill Harris, disagreed on this point and Harris left the company in May 2000.
As a PayPal member, you are able to:
- Transfer money from your bank account to your PayPal account
- Get a cash advance from your credit card and deposit the amount in your PayPal account
- Transfer money from your own PayPal account to another member's PayPal account
- Transfer money from your PayPal account to your checking or savings account
- Have a check mailed to you for the balance of your PayPal account
- Get a PayPal debit card that you can use to make real-world purchases from your PayPal account
Back to the main question. Why is Ghana not on PayPal?
Its simple. Credit Card Fraud !!!
Apparently, in the early 2000's in most West African countries including Ghana, Nigeria and Senegal when the internet cafe was a new phenomenon, many youngsters spent most of their time at the cyber cafe surfing the internet. There was however a worrying trend that began to take wave in most of these internet cafes. The young men found darknet websites that gave them unlimited access to credit and mastercard details of people in Europe and America. They used this details to shop for clothing , gadgets from ecommerce websites like Ebay and Amazon. When shipping of the goods were not allowed directly to Africa the fraudsters would use their family and friends abroad as middle men / passage routes to receive the products and further ship it to them in Ghana and their respective countries. Most of these poor and disadvantaged youth found a gold mine in this trade and they spent almost 24 hours shopping and fishing for credit card details to scam. Others went as far as using the PayPal accounts of vulnerable account holders to orchestrate this dubious activity.
Somewhere around 2004 after thousands of legitimate users of Paypal , amazon and ebay complained about unusual purchases and huge sums of money were getting lost in their accounts. These technology giants decided it was time to curb this fraudulent activity of credit card fraud. They simultaneously decided to blacklist so many West African countries from using the platform for their illicit activities. Some of the countries that were blacklisted included Ghana , Nigeria and many other African countries. Over the next decade that followed it was impossible for people resident in Ghana and the other blacklisted to make or receive payments on the PayPal platform. With many online merchants using PayPal, sometimes exclusively, to receive payments for products and services, Ghana's 24 million people, like many more in other blacklisted countries, were unable to transact business.
Source: Hacker Lab
Yess!!! Thanks to these acts of some ghanaian youngsters the rest of us are deprived of the joys of PayPal.
What has been done so far to help whitelist Ghana?
It turns out in 2013, some of the African youngsters used social media and other mediums to gain the attention of Paypal. A Ghanaian youth named Samuel Darko started an online petitionto make it impossible for people resident in Ghana to make or receive payments on the PayPal platform. His target was 5,000 signatures and was able to get about 2,486 signatures and a lot of social media buzz.
Finally they got the attention of PayPal. PayPal then decided to give access to some countries like Nigeria but again Ghana was not whitelisted.