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 / 9   >   >>
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. 
TanuSaha
50%
50%
TanuSaha,
User Rank: Apprentice
9/23/2019 | 9:04:58 AM
re: Hacking Higher Education
I am very impressed with your article. I love the way you write this article. Thank you for sharing this wonderful post with us. Also, you can visit here: Techpout

 
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
geeksquad9333
0%
100%
geeksquad9333,
User Rank: Guru
8/1/2019 | 10:04:43 AM
re: Hacking Higher Education
Geek Squad Tech Support provides the best technical help and guidance. Get in touch with extensively trained tech support team for all sort of queries and issues regarding your devices. You can contact Geek Squad round the clock according to your convenience.
https://geekstechs.org/geek-squad-tech-support/
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
Page 1 / 9   >   >>
The Cold Truth about Cyber Insurance
Chris Kennedy, CISO & VP Customer Success, AttackIQ,  11/7/2019
Black Hat Q&A: Hacking a '90s Sports Car
Black Hat Staff, ,  11/7/2019
The State of Email Security and Protection
Mike Flouton, Vice President of Email Security at Barracuda Networks,  11/5/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: This comment is waiting for review by our moderators.
Current Issue
7 Threats & Disruptive Forces Changing the Face of Cybersecurity
This Dark Reading Tech Digest gives an in-depth look at the biggest emerging threats and disruptive forces that are changing the face of cybersecurity today.
Flash Poll
Assessing Cybersecurity Risk in Today's Enterprise
Assessing Cybersecurity Risk in Today's Enterprise
Security leaders are struggling to understand their organizations risk exposure. While many are confident in their security strategies and processes, theyre also more concerned than ever about getting breached. Download this report today and get insights on how today's enterprises assess and perceive the risks they face in 2019!
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-18881
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-12
WSO2 IS as Key Manager 5.7.0 allows unauthenticated reflected XSS in the dashboard user profile.
CVE-2019-18882
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-12
WSO2 IS as Key Manager 5.7.0 allows stored XSS in download-userinfo.jag because Content-Type is mishandled.
CVE-2019-18873
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-12
FUDForum 3.0.9 is vulnerable to Stored XSS via the User-Agent HTTP header. This may result in remote code execution. An attacker can use a user account to fully compromise the system via a GET request. When the admin visits user information under "User Manager" in the control panel, the pa...
CVE-2019-18874
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-12
psutil (aka python-psutil) through 5.6.5 can have a double free. This occurs because of refcount mishandling within a while or for loop that converts system data into a Python object.
CVE-2019-18862
PUBLISHED: 2019-11-11
maidag in GNU Mailutils before 3.8 is installed setuid and allows local privilege escalation in the url mode.