IEBC dismisses database hacking claims

Kenya’s electoral body the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has dismissed claims that its database had been hacked.

Reports reported by a section of the media had indicated that someone had gained access into the commission’s database and acquired personal details of registered voters from a country in Western Kenya.

The suspect was identified as one Kiprop, a 21-year university student who according to the Director of Criminal Investigation (DCI), hacked the database and fished out personal details of about 61,617 voters. 

Kiprop, who is suspected to be running a high-tech mobile phone scam syndicate, was arrested on Saturday morning in Juja in an operation led by investigators from the Crime Research and Intelligence Bureau, supported by Safaricom’s fraud investigations team and Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology security officers.

In his possession was a bag containing SIM cards belonging to Safaricom, Airtel, and Telkom mobile phone service. He was also found with data containing names of registered voters, their ID numbers, and dates of birth.

IEBC has however dismissed the claims by DCI saying the reports are false.

‘’The commission would like to clarify that the information is not factual’’ a statement signed by Wafula Chebukati, the commission’s chairman read.

‘’ The commission’s register of voters is kept in a Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) system which is kept in several servers. 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’’ the statement read.

The BVR systems were installed 8 years ago and according to the chairman, they have never been hacked. This he says is because the servers are connected to an open internet. 

‘’In addition, the rest of the commission’s entire internal network is behind a firewall system’’ 

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