IEBC Response to Reports of Server Being Hacked

  • EBC Chairperosn Wafula Chebukati addressing a crowd on Oct 22, 2018
    EBC Chairperson Wafula Chebukati at a conference held on October 22, 2018
  • IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati on Sunday, July 18, refuted media reports that a 21-year old student had hacked the electoral commission's servers and stolen voters' data. 

    In a press release statement, Chebukati strongly disputed the claims saying that IEBC stores voter registration data in a Biometric Voter Registration System which is hosted on several servers.

    He added that the servers have no connection with the open internet and would therefore be very difficult to access without permission. 

    “The BVR system has been designed to have its own isolated network, set of servers, as well as user account directory to ensure integrity, confidentiality, and high availability,” read Chebukati's statement.

    “Since the installation and commissioning of the system 8 years ago, the BVR system that hosts the register of voters used during elections has never been hacked because the servers are not connected to the open internet,” clarified the statement.

    Undated image of IEBC ballot boxes after voters had cast their votes
    Undated image of IEBC ballot boxes after voters had cast their votes

    Chebukati went on to add that the rest of the electoral body's data assets were secured with a high firewall that had never been compromised. 

    The IEBC chairman however admitted that the commission services numerous requests by various entities requiring register of voters for specific electoral areas. 

    Chebukati issued the statement after the Standard and the Star reported that the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) had arrested a suspect named Kiprop after he hacked the IEBC servers. 

    The suspect and his syndicate had been suspected to have hacked into the IEBC database and obtained personal information belonging to 61,617 registered voters in a county in Western Kenya.

    DCI had also reported that the individual is suspected to have been running a mobile phone hacking syndicate.

    The 21-year-old is said to have randomly called users and convincing them that they were the wrong owners of the said SIM cards.

    He would pose as an M-PESA customer service representative and would trick unsuspecting victims into dialing random codes.

    He would then gain access to the victim’s accounts after successfully swapping SIM card details and thereby stealing information and money from the victims.

    The IEBC is now distancing itself from the claims that would have been seen to erode the integrity and credibility of the Commission.

    An image of Wafula Chebukati
    IEBC Chairperson Wafula Chebukati speaking at the Law Society of Kenya annual Cocktail event at Intercontinental Hotel in December 2018.
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