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Blind journalist hacks into Airtel database

By - | January 28th 2013

The use of unknown software to hack into  Airtel Zambia network poses serious security and privacy concerns

A visually impaired Zambian journalist has appeared in court for illegally accessing Airtel Zambia’s database.

He is allegedly accused of stealing mobile airtime from the country’s foreign affairs minister.

The accused, Jairos Tembo from Lusaka, allegedly used unknown software to hack into the operator’s database.

He is then said to have siphoned mobile airtime worth thousands of dollars from the country’s foreign affairs minister, other politicians and businessmen.

Tembo stands accused of having stolen more than $4, 000  (Sh350,000) worth of airtime from the victims before he was arrested.

He was arrested after victims put pressure on the service provider to explain why their airtime was mysteriously disappearing from their phones, and why the operator was jamming their calls.

Foreign Affairs minister Given Lubinda told the court that, on several occasions, he had to approach Airtel and their agents to replace his Sim card because his phone experienced service problems under the circumstances.

Network problems

Lubinda said he did not know as to who was tampering with his Sim-card and siphoning airtime from his phone.

Lubinda said other than experiencing network problems, his phone was depleted of airtime.

“On every occasion, I ended up without money in my phone. It is difficult to be exact on how much I lost but it’s approximately $4000,” Lubinda told the court.

In addition, Muvi Television Chief Executive Steve Nyirenda has also told the court that he lost approximately $3,000 (Sh261,000)  worth of airtime owing to the alleged siphoning.

Nyirenda said he then reported the matter to the service provider and insisted that the service provider provide an explanation.

It was at this point, Nyirenda said, that the service provider launched investigations into the scandal.

The investigations led to the arrest of Jairos. Jairos however, denies any wrongdoing. Trial in the matter continues.

—Source: www.itwebafrica.com


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