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The Econet broadband website has been hacked

Econet Defaced Website

The Econet Wireless broadband website www.econetbroadband.co.zw has been hacked. We just discovered this right now while working on a story for the new Econet email system, which we will post later.

If you visit the site right now, you will see it’s been defaced with the following banner:

Econet Defaced Website

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A section that normally contains a link to the Econet support page has also been defaced with the following:

Econet Defaced Support Section

The support link now redirects to the following Facebook page:

Econet Facebook Hate Group

It’s not clear yet if the creators of the Facebook page are the ones that have hacked into the Econet site. We’ll try to find out more this evening. We wrote about this same Facebook hate group back in April in an article about Econet’s delay of the launch of mobile broadband services.

We’ve tried to call the Econet guys we know so they can have the site taken down ASAP to fix it and lock it down. No one is answering. The Econet call centre ofcourse is a non-starter but we’ll try it. We’ve also sent emails to people we know there and hopefully they’l see it soon enough.

We’l post more if we get anything. If you happen to know more about this, just add a comment to this story or send us an email.

UPDATE: Econet has taken its websites offline.


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37 thoughts on “The Econet broadband website has been hacked

  1. I ain’t a big fan of econet but i really feel pity for these guys, I’m just wondering howlong they gonna take to bring back their site to full functionality. They should also, however, avoid embaracing long promises and under delivery, lest they be attacked again.

  2. They have felt the warmth of the festive season kkkkk something that should get the ____ Yo Africa hosts OPENING their eyes. This aint the first more is to come Mr Editor. Its Called Operation Kunakirwa. Kisismusi

    [comment edited by techzim edited]

  3. If normal subscribers get to an extent of sitting down and drafting such a hacking tactic, then that’s not normal. I think its an act of jelousy, or a competitor out there sponsoring such an unethical act. I pray that hacking does not grow in Zim,…coz ummm

  4. these econet guys should have been more aware & alert of the security risks that come with the provision of faster internet to more users. i hope they were not hacked using their own bundles,lol. but its a pity ppl lets not do this to our dear econet which is trying to bring light in terms of telecommunications!

  5. wow…econet hacked…thats something, but they should have better security systems than this…tis very embarassing

  6. Hmmm , i can see ECO is under fire!!!! well its true even their data bundles are jus too expensive, they have tried to bring new light to telecommz but they r being more of bullies and taking advantage of the situation. do smn on tht one ECO cz we don wana see mo stones cmin your way.

  7. Ok…why would someone hack into someone’s website? are u not being heard or this is just hatred? i am sure there are ways to resolve this

  8. Welcome to the World Wide Web. People hack to show you just how dumb your security implementation is. Thumbs up to hacking it makes some people go to work for real, not to be on Facebook.

  9. Haven’t you guys got hold of the other hacking incident,in which a code was circulated among Econet subscribers and once you entered the code you could put a figure for any amount of airtime you want and your account would be recharged. It happened on Thursday and all Econet subscribers who did that where subsequently blocked yesterday on Friday. I guess thats why their recharge system was down for the better part of yesterday.

  10. It’s hilarious if you ask me. But the truth is as much as I’m against such cyber crimes I’m inwardly happy. I’m just playing along with Econet until a new foreign player comes along. We are being ripped off and you’ll find people defending the corporation by saying at least they are bringing technology to Zim. No they are clearly not doing it due to their unconditional love for the people of Zimbabwe. They are doing it for the bottom line. High profits that’ll make some ppl join Forbes’ rich list within a year. But what they are not seeing is it is inevitable for new, more efficient players are coming. It’s inevitable. Mtn is definitely coming as they continue their foreign adventures. Vodacom,Telkom and other telecoms companies will invade this country because it’s a fresh hungry economy. I’ve been in South Africa for some time and I can tell you the competition is tough. By 2012 the pricing in that market will be as low as what they have in Western and even Eastern markets. They are seeing the gap Econet is creating with their exorbitant monopoly prices and extremely poor service and when the opportunity comes they’ll flood this market and I can predict number portability etc and Econet is going to lose the market in a flash

    1. but they have loads of free minutes and GOODIES

      Right now Netone is trying to roll out 3G and 4G smartphones on credit at ~$40 a month ((that is the best value deal for a Samsung Galaxy Y typically $150 at cost, the deal will cost you $48/month with $35 airtime value/month, so you’ll have paid $158 for that phone directly after the 12 month contract, the rest goes directly to airtime etc)), $140 for the S2
      Check the same deals in RSA, ~R200 a month with much more perks, check the costs on internet bundles, check the speed of access, compare rates of one-time connections, compare the total package and you will see that the RSA prices are justified. Zim prices are exhorbitant, RIPoffs I tell you

  11. Please note that the Econet Broadband site nor any another Econet websites are hosted by Yo!Africa. Econet websites are hosted by Ecoweb.

    A DIG returns:

    ; <> DiG 9.7.1-P2 <> http://www.econetbroadband.co.zw
    ;; global options: +cmd
    ;; Got answer:
    ;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 27002
    ;; flags: qr rd ra; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 1, AUTHORITY: 2, ADDITIONAL: 2

    ;; QUESTION SECTION:
    ;www.econetbroadband.co.zw. IN A

    ;; ANSWER SECTION:
    http://www.econetbroadband.co.zw. 74874 IN A 217.15.120.20

    ;; AUTHORITY SECTION:
    econetbroadband.co.zw. 74874 IN NS internet.co.zw.
    econetbroadband.co.zw. 74874 IN NS ns1.econet.co.zw.

    ;; ADDITIONAL SECTION:
    ns1.econet.co.zw. 52145 IN A 217.15.120.4
    internet.co.zw. 56381 IN A 217.15.120.90

    IP whois returns:

    http://www.ecoweb.co.zw
    217.15.120.20

    inetnum: 217.15.118.0 – 217.15.122.127
    netname: EWZ
    descr: Econet Wireless Zimbabwe
    descr: Zim
    country: ZW
    remarks: Abuse Contact: techs@ecoweb.co.zw

  12. Hey Jonathan….why can’t we argue more on the issue of the hacked website…Do you think its going to solve anything? In as much as hacking is concerned I thought we must balance both sides…the Security and the Ethical…lets secure networks…but hackers out there don’t use your advantage of knowing things to practise such evil.

  13. They maybe high but better than what’s offered on our local market, from monopoly providers currently shielded from nimbler external competitors. The real issue is prices on the Zim market are anything but supply-and-demand driven. And Econet one’s are certainly not driven by any notions of altruism.

  14. Oops it wasn’t me! But then again I am not really sympathetic. It’s intriguing that a hacker would actually target Econet’s site. Did Econet even notice that their site had been mauled, or only noticed when alerted by the likes of Techzim? As a tech company let’s see how fast they bring up their site back up again. I won’t bet on Econet being able to track down the maulers!

  15. Zim webhosting companies simply suffr frm mysql injections, esp Mweb nw Iway.we nid to work togethr as develprs nd help our country.as for econet,vry sry.

  16. I suspected this would happen one day. Look guys. These site are developed with Joomla and i noticed that the developers Econet is using to do their sites are very joniour simply by looking at the sites they do. Some of the links on the sites actually point to localhost if you noticed, like the @Work links at the left.

    All they do is download and change images and text. Most of the settings in the templates are as is. The template that econet is using on their broadband website is called icetheme. you can download a copy from any of the torrnts out there. I think it’s time econet looks for serious web developers not Joomla configurers. I can bet that any Joomla site can easily be hacked into with a little social engineering and good tools.

    I wrote to them on their feedback page and not one seems to check that. Do these site undergo any testing or they are 2nd year projects for some BSc student. It’s only that websites are not a big deal for Econet coz most of their marketing is done offline. From a security point of view, this could happen to anyone. But organisations like econet should take security of their public servers seriously coz it can cause a lot of embarassment. For someone who supposedly won the ICT Company of the year, a lot could be done. To the hackers i say … it’s another way of putting things across.

  17. you might also need to take into consideration the ISP. That where it all started, How did the hacker manage to get into the server ?

  18. You think Vodacom, MTN, Telkom etc are all coming to Zim??? Let me tell you the honest truth my friend, thats currently impossible. The System thats used in Zimbabwe at the moment is GSM900, and it can only accomodate 3 mobile operators, In South Africa they use GSM1800 which accomodates about 6 Mobile Operators. So for that reason, Zimbabwe cant have more than Econet, Net1 and telecel. Thats why MTN once thought of buying Telecel, and thats the only way we can have a new operator (definitely net1 and econet wouldnt be sold).

    Then for Landlines, We have two, Tele access and Tel one. The Law that governs POTRAZ allows it to issue only two licences for land line companies, unfortunately TeleAccess had some problems with the authorities, so their issue has been in courts for almost 10 years now. Until that issue has been resolved we wont have any new player in the landlines industry. Thought i shld mention abt this, after hearing some guys saying Econet might soon be a landline operator as well.

  19. when ur site is hacked…its a pointer to a general dissatisfaction among consumers. WE HAD FALLEN IN LOVE WITH Econet but somewhere along the way, they dumped us.WE ARE NOT HAPPY…WE ARE GOING TO THROW AWAY ALL OUR ECONET LINES INTO THE DUSTBIN AS SOON AS A BETTER PLAYER COMES IN.FOREWARNED IS FOREARMED!!!!!!BY THE WAY I AM BEGINNING TO QUESTION ECONET’S CLOUT…THEY GOT KICKED OUT OF NIGERIA,KENYA…..ZIM AND NEW ZEALAND ARE NEXT.

  20. dont blame the tool. its the carpenter who’s a fault. Joomla, in the right hands, can be as secure as they come.

  21. i believe hacking will help econet pull up their socks in terms of security as well as service delivery. They should take the threat as an awakening threat and work on their loop holes.

  22. How can a so-called “ICT” company like Econet have funny website which can be so easily hacked??? This is a wake-up call for all so-called blue-chip companies to get out of their stone-age shells. Banks watch-out!!!

  23. joomla is actually a very very good and secure platform…however, noob developers often do not develop websites with security in mind…hence the problem. you have to secure your website, and then you have to secure the server that hosts the website. thats how it goes.

  24. it will be interesting to know the person who hacked into Econet website, and recharging system. I just want to also test my powers and hack into his system and mobile phone. I am going to have fun !!! yipeeeeeeeeeee, and possibly his wife/girlfriend oooops i said it

  25. You are right about the mobile tariffs for *Voice* – but data is a whole different story.

    While I generally disagree with the tone of the OP, he is right to say competition is tough in SA. Cell-C recently lit a fire under it’s much larger rivals by offering data bundles at next to nothing (R125 for 2GB – works out to less that 1 US cent per MB). Performance is great too, typically gets 3Mbps+ (on a 7mbps modem)

  26. Econet should just be thankful they “ONLY” had their websites hacked it could have been something worse. Guys lets be honest Zimbabwean websites are very porous, they dont get hacked because they is nothing of value on our websites. The case of of Microsoft is similar to econet they got too greedy and thats the reason why its the most virus pron OS, programmers and computer guys dont like to be exploited with the way econet is going charging ridiculous prices for their products and poor service they should tighten their belts…oh maybe they should invest more money in security than in adverts and propaganda promotions..

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