Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Application Security //

Database Security

4/24/2013
01:10 PM
Connect Directly
LinkedIn
Google+
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

Hacking Higher Education

The cybersecurity challenge on college campuses lies as much with the students as with malicious outsiders.

InformationWeek Green -  Mar. 4, 2013 InformationWeek Green
Download the entire May 2013 issue of InformationWeek Education, distributed in an all-digital format (registration required).


Hacking Higher Education When a faculty member at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, logged in to the university's grade book last fall, she realized something was wrong: The grades in the online system didn't match her paper records. She was alert enough to see this was no mere glitch.

In March, after months of investigation, police charged two students with hacking the system to inflate grades. Police maintain that Beckley Parker, 21, of Weston, Conn., had changed his own grades for 17 classes since the spring of 2011, and also changed grades for 50 other students, according to the Dayton Daily News. David Callahan, 22, of Cambridge, Mass., reportedly changed his own grade once and two other students' grades. Although the facts are subject to interpretation, it seems the two were either trying to help fraternity brothers or other friends at the same time they were improving their own grades, or they may have been trying to cover their tracks by changing more than one grade in each case.

All it took for them to make the changes was an inexpensive keylogger device, inserted between the keyboard and the computer it was attached to, which allowed them to record the actions of teachers entering their passwords for the grading system. They were then able to access the system at will.

After cooperating with investigators, the students avoided being charged with a felony, instead accepting dismissal from the university and pleading guilty to multiple counts of "attempted unauthorized use of property," a misdemeanor.

Miami University's information security officer, Joe Bazeley, says an attack on the university's learning and grading systems is actually worse than the sort of attacks, namely information theft and exposure, that used to keep him up at night before the keylogger incident. "We produce knowledge and identify that via grades and a diploma," Bazeley says. The grade book hack "challenges the integrity of those grades and diplomas," he says.

Learn From The Hacks

Report Cover
Schools Do More With Less

Technology advances are providing new tools for learning. The challenge is how to take advantage of the opportunities when resources are stretched thin. Our report is free with registration.
Get This And All Our Reports

Unfortunately, examples abound in higher education of the other kind of security breach.

An undergraduate at the University of Nebraska last year was able to break into a database associated with the university's PeopleSoft system, exposing Social Security numbers and other sensitive information on about 654,000 students, alumni and employees. According to our sister website Dark Reading, the university was lucky enough to detect the breach and shut it down quickly. An IT staffer picked up on an error message that seemed like evidence of something amiss, and a recently installed security information and event management system helped network managers sort through system logs and collect enough evidence to allow police to get a warrant to confiscate the computer of the student believed to have been behind the attack.

In March, Salem State University in Massachusetts alerted 25,000 current and former students and staff that their Social Security numbers may have been compromised in a database breach. If the pattern of the last few years repeats itself, expect higher education institutions to experience another half dozen major security breaches by the end of 2013.

To read the rest of the article,
download the May 2013 issue of InformationWeek Education.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Page 1 / 8   >   >>
jacksmith2712
50%
50%
jacksmith2712,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/15/2019 | 11:03:57 AM
Pending Review
This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
spycamera
50%
50%
spycamera,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/15/2019 | 6:37:28 AM
Pending Review
This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
JayceJohnson
50%
50%
JayceJohnson,
User Rank: Guru
6/6/2019 | 6:09:12 AM
Re: Hacking Higher Education
Law assignment help is a well-liked assignment in Singapore. Top universities of Singapore's first priority is to give assignment on college assignment help. Acquire immediate law assignment help before completion of time at a fair cost. Increase your grades in college and get A+ rank in academics with high-quality assignment help from our expert's writers.
needassignmentshelp
0%
100%
needassignmentshelp,
User Rank: Guru
5/20/2019 | 5:55:26 AM
Re: Assignment Help Sydney
Thank you for posting such a great article! Are you struggling with your management assignments? Annex our professional assistance and yield better grades in your assignments. You can easily access our online management assignment help anytime.

Human Resource Management Assignment Help, Operations Management Assignment Help, Project Management Assignment Help
maryrobinsonusa
50%
50%
maryrobinsonusa,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/14/2019 | 6:38:51 AM
Re: Coding Assignment
thank you so much for the info
JayceJohnson
0%
100%
JayceJohnson,
User Rank: Guru
4/19/2019 | 7:12:58 AM
Re: Interesting Post
 We have essay experts who specifically help in an Essay Writing assignment for students of all educational and they provide you with their assignments before delivery of time.
jessicab242
50%
50%
jessicab242,
User Rank: Apprentice
4/5/2019 | 6:16:55 PM
great post
Thank you darkreading for this post.
JayceJohnson
0%
100%
JayceJohnson,
User Rank: Guru
2/18/2019 | 5:49:08 AM
re: Hacking Higher Education
If you are looking for assignment help expert than go nowhere else, come at Singaporeassignmenthelp.com and take our excellent writing services. We have subject specific writers in law, management, IT, nursing, English, history and many more disciplines https://www.singaporeassignmenthelp.com/assignment-help/
needassignmentshelp
50%
50%
needassignmentshelp,
User Rank: Guru
1/15/2019 | 12:48:56 AM
Re: How to alleviate these incidents?
Great Post, Thank you for sharing such a good and useful information here. 
alishiasergi
50%
50%
alishiasergi,
User Rank: Apprentice
1/11/2019 | 2:32:57 PM
re: Hacking Higher Education
It is nice to read the information provided in your blog and i like this information because it is based on reality and i like this information. And it provides knowledge and useful information to the visitors of this site and i would like to visit this site again.
Page 1 / 8   >   >>
7 Truths About BEC Scams
Ericka Chickowski, Contributing Writer,  6/13/2019
DNS Firewalls Could Prevent Billions in Losses to Cybercrime
Curtis Franklin Jr., Senior Editor at Dark Reading,  6/13/2019
Cognitive Bias Can Hamper Security Decisions
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  6/10/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
Building and Managing an IT Security Operations Program
As cyber threats grow, many organizations are building security operations centers (SOCs) to improve their defenses. In this Tech Digest you will learn tips on how to get the most out of a SOC in your organization - and what to do if you can't afford to build one.
Flash Poll
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
The State of IT Operations and Cybersecurity Operations
Your enterprise's cyber risk may depend upon the relationship between the IT team and the security team. Heres some insight on what's working and what isn't in the data center.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2013-7472
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
The "Count per Day" plugin before 3.2.6 for WordPress allows XSS via the wp-admin/?page=cpd_metaboxes daytoshow parameter.
CVE-2019-12839
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
In OrangeHRM 4.3.1 and before, there is an input validation error within admin/listMailConfiguration (txtSendmailPath parameter) that allows authenticated attackers to achieve arbitrary command execution.
CVE-2019-12840
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
In Webmin through 1.910, any user authorized to the "Package Updates" module can execute arbitrary commands with root privileges via the data parameter to update.cgi.
CVE-2019-12835
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
formats/xml.cpp in Leanify 0.4.3 allows for a controlled out-of-bounds write in xml_memory_writer::write via characters that require escaping.
CVE-2019-12830
PUBLISHED: 2019-06-15
In MyBB before 1.8.21, an attacker can exploit a parsing flaw in the Private Message / Post renderer that leads to [video] BBCode persistent XSS to take over any forum account, aka a nested video MyCode issue.