The final result of Russia’s version of the popular TV singing talent show, “The Voice Kids,” has been cancelled after it was found that thousands of automated calls and text messages were used to rig voting in favor of its 10-year-old winner.
Moscow-based cybersecurity firm Group-IB was brought in to examine the results after complaints were raised over the victory of Mikella Abramova, the daughter of well-known Russian popstar Alsou and millionaire Yan Abramov.
Abramova won the show’s final, broadcasted on April 26, with 56.5% of a phone-in vote. Large numbers of viewers, however, immediately began complaining online and the state Channel 1, which airs the show, noted there had been “anomalies” in the voting. So, it hired Group-IB to investigate.