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
100%
0%

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.

 

Recommended Reading:

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
<<   <   Page 3 / 11   >   >>
joshgay
50%
50%
joshgay,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/30/2019 | 6:11:55 AM
Re: Agree with your topic
thanks for sharing this info with us I found it so amazingly glad to be here
HolyFrolic
50%
50%
HolyFrolic,
User Rank: Apprentice
10/31/2019 | 2:55:12 PM
Thanks
im just amazed. This is a great blog posting and very useful

 
dmflows
50%
50%
dmflows,
User Rank: Apprentice
10/11/2019 | 6:31:39 AM
onlineshoppingsaless.com
This Was A Very Helpful Post and Unique Information It Contained As Well. Thank you very much for giving this awesome post, it is a great way to fully enjoy it.

 
leo5121472313
50%
50%
leo5121472313,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/26/2019 | 3:06:03 AM
leo

Your blog is filled with unique good articles! I was impressed how well you express your thoughts.

 

hertavein
50%
50%
hertavein,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/24/2019 | 7:24:34 AM
Re: great post
I am truly glad to read this webpage posts which carries lots of useful information, thanks for providing these kinds of statistics. 
krismartin12
50%
50%
krismartin12,
User Rank: Apprentice
8/29/2019 | 2:15:32 AM
Re: Assignment Help Sydney
Bcom is the most opted course for which student have to submit the solved assignment of their respective subjects in the study center. The last date to submit the ignou bcom solved assignment 2018 19 is september 30. We offer bcom and ba solved assignment to all the Ignou students at a very nominal price. 
REISEN1955
100%
0%
REISEN1955,
User Rank: Ninja
8/2/2019 | 1:33:01 PM
re: Hacking Higher Education
Advertisement not really good here and besides the service is a disaster - and I speak as a systems professional who is in Cyber security and has done support for offices, small businesses and home-office users.  I would never go to Geek Squad. 

And all the replies seem to be the same basic idea!!!   Hmmmmmmm
tdsan
50%
50%
tdsan,
User Rank: Ninja
7/19/2019 | 5:47:49 PM
Identified the problem, now what is the fix
I do agree with the most recent commenter, thank you for sharing. But now that we understand the problem, how do we resolve the issue so it does not happen again.
  • Do we purchase cameras so we see who is going in and out of the various buildings
  • Do we purchase software to help us detect devices on the network that are out of the norm
  • Do we perform audits of the network and inventory the environment so issues are caught ahead of time (is there a program in place that does it every 6 months)
  • Is there an educational program to train the students and teachers about the use of the network and approved usage

However, removing the students is somewhat harsh, I do think this is a real-world attack and their exploit can be used by the other departments, don't kill their dreams, but have them work with the Cybersecurity teams to demonstrate real-world examples. Punish them but have them teach how a hacker thinks, there is a psychological evaluation that could help the students find ways to address real-world attacks (this is a perfect example). Put them on probabation but send them to the psychological evaluation unit where they can be evaluated and studied. This helps everyone understand how the mind works so you can combat the problem, if you have never been a hacker, then how do you know what to look for in order to defend against a potential theat (there was a movie called "To understand the mind of a killer" or "How to get away with murder", well why not do the samething but do it in a classroom setting.

Just a thought.

Todd
hazrataliquotes
50%
50%
hazrataliquotes,
User Rank: Apprentice
7/19/2019 | 4:05:12 AM
Re: great post
such a great and helpful post keep this type of post sharing because sharing is caring god will help those who help others
blingbling88
50%
50%
blingbling88,
User Rank: Apprentice
7/16/2019 | 12:07:48 AM
Re: Apple support number
Excellent blog right here! I really enjoyed your article! thank you very much! io games
<<   <   Page 3 / 11   >   >>
COVID-19: Latest Security News & Commentary
Dark Reading Staff 8/10/2020
Pen Testers Who Got Arrested Doing Their Jobs Tell All
Kelly Jackson Higgins, Executive Editor at Dark Reading,  8/5/2020
Researcher Finds New Office Macro Attacks for MacOS
Curtis Franklin Jr., Senior Editor at Dark Reading,  8/7/2020
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
Special Report: Computing's New Normal, a Dark Reading Perspective
This special report examines how IT security organizations have adapted to the "new normal" of computing and what the long-term effects will be. Read it and get a unique set of perspectives on issues ranging from new threats & vulnerabilities as a result of remote working to how enterprise security strategy will be affected long term.
Flash Poll
The Changing Face of Threat Intelligence
The Changing Face of Threat Intelligence
This special report takes a look at how enterprises are using threat intelligence, as well as emerging best practices for integrating threat intel into security operations and incident response. Download it today!
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2020-17478
PUBLISHED: 2020-08-10
ECDSA/EC/Point.pm in Crypt::Perl before 0.33 does not properly consider timing attacks against the EC point multiplication algorithm.
CVE-2020-15648
PUBLISHED: 2020-08-10
Using object or embed tags, it was possible to frame other websites, even if they disallowed framing using the X-Frame-Options header. This vulnerability affects Thunderbird &lt; 78 and Firefox &lt; 78.0.2.
CVE-2020-15649
PUBLISHED: 2020-08-10
Given an installed malicious file picker application, an attacker was able to steal and upload local files of their choosing, regardless of the actually files picked. *Note: This issue only affected Firefox for Android. Other operating systems are unaffected.*. This vulnerability affects Firefox ESR...
CVE-2020-15650
PUBLISHED: 2020-08-10
Given an installed malicious file picker application, an attacker was able to overwrite local files and thus overwrite Firefox settings (but not access the previous profile). *Note: This issue only affected Firefox for Android. Other operating systems are unaffected.*. This vulnerability affects Fir...
CVE-2020-15651
PUBLISHED: 2020-08-10
A unicode RTL order character in the downloaded file name can be used to change the file's name during the download UI flow to change the file extension. This vulnerability affects Firefox for iOS &lt; 28.