Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

ZEC servers hosted by military company Africom amid rigging claims

The Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) is accused of being run by the military following allegations by some data experts that the electoral body’s servers are being hosted by Africom, a company believed to be owned by the army.

According to NewsDay, Fernhaven Investments (Private) Limited, an investment vehicle of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces is the majority shareholder in Africom.

The electoral body dismissed the allegation that Africom, a leading converged communication service provider, was hosting their servers but failed to prove that it has an alternative host.

Zec spokesperson Jasper Mangwana said: “Zec has no server hosted by any external organisation, including Africom.”

Activist group and data experts Team Pachedu, however, insisted that there was overwhelming evidence that Zec servers were being hosted by Africom.

“When the Zec website was hacked on August 1, 2018, forensic experts investigated. They found that Zec was hosted on an Africom server, IP 41.57.65.19, sharing hosting with other sites like netguardsec.com. Shared hosting means the server was not at Zec,” Team Pachedu said.

“The website was developed in a rush by Africom and uploaded on the Africom domain zec.org.zw, not the usual government’s zec.gov.zw. The code Africom used was recycled and had significant security flaws. This made hacking easy.

“The same shared server that Africom hosted the Zec site in 2018, 41.57.65.19 is the same server that was being used by the just deleted sub-domain training.zec.org.zw. This server is currently hosting 54 websites, confirming Zec is not hosting it, but Africom.”

Army spokesperson Colonel Alphios Makotore in an interview with NewsDay, dismissed the allegations saying the army does not run elections.

“Talk to Zec, the army does not run elections in Zimbabwe. You have called the wrong place. I do not work at Zec or Africom,” Makotore said.

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