Critical NMS System Hacked

  • The Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) online application system was breached by hackers, which led to the suspension of hundreds of construction sector jobs and multi-billion shilling property investments.

    According to a report by Business Daily, the hackers gained access to the System’s Quick Response (QR) code and illegally made approvals, which led to NMS officials shutting down the system.

    The e-construction development control system is a platform that was launched in a bid to make it easier for Nairobi county to approve development plans.

    Through the system, property developers don’t have to submit hard copies of development plans for stamping for approval. 

    A file image of city hall
    A file image of city hall

    The reports were confirmed by NMS Deputy Director-General Kangethe Thuku who affirmed the breach and suspension of the projects.

    “We discovered that the e-construction system was recently hacked into and we have stopped using that system for the time being as we look for a solution,” he stated.

    The official added that the illegal breach came to light after concerns were raised by various associations which decried the rising cases of approved buildings that went against construction policies.

    Thuku gave an example of zoned-off areas such as Muthaiga North where most cases had been raised.

    The online system was developed by City Hall in March 2020, in a bid to enhance the process where building approvals could be made online. 

    NMS however took over the system after President Uhuru Kenyatta directed the entity’s Director-General Mohammed Badi to eliminate all cartels who had taken control of the approval sector. 

    Uhuru stated that the cartels had led to a backlog of 4,400 unprocessed project applications at the time.

    He added that with the takeover by NMS, the county would eliminate corruption cases primarily caused when hard copies of development plans were physically submitted for stamping at City Hall.

    President Uhuru Kenyatta (right) and NMS boss Mohamed Badi (left) at a Christmas event in Westlands, Nairobi on Friday, December 25, 2020
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