South African Elections: Cyberattack on Election Commission Website

With more than 50% of ballots counted, the ruling ANC party managed to get 41.8% of the vote

Servers collecting the results of the general election held in South Africa on May 29 were attacked by hackers who took down the Central Electoral Commission’s website for several hours. It was not until morning of May 31 that the official voting website resumed operations after a long hiatus, which election commission officials said “did not jeopardize the data collected.”

A statement released by the National Electoral Commission emphasized that “the data collected in the central database remained intact” and that “the voting results were not compromised.” The servers have been restored, and voter registration operations continue as usual, the Commission emphasized.

The attack comes after the ANC party, which has been in power in South Africa for 30 years, won just 41.8% of the vote with more than 50% of constituencies counted so far, and there are fears it will not be able to win an absolute majority of seats in South Africa’s National Assembly.

In second place at the moment is the Democratic Alliance (DA) with 23.6% of voter support. In third place is former President Jacob Zuma’s party, uMkhonto weSizwe (MK), which, with almost 11% of the vote, managed to squeeze out the political movement called the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), which is currently stuck at around 8%. A total of 27.8 million citizens were called to vote in South Africa’s seventh general election since the end of apartheid. The National Assembly will then choose South Africa’s next president, who will remain in office for the next five years.