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Student Suspected of Tampering with New Trier Computers

A student broke into the computer system of New Trier school district and accessed grades and results of a college admission exam named ACT, apparently to know the ranks of remaining students in the class. This was known from a memo dispatched to students' parents on February 29, 2008.

School officials who e-mailed to parents of New Trier students wrote that a student broke into the computer network of the school and took advantage of a software deficiency to obtain selected data on every student. The school district reported the incident to Winnetka Police, and the erring student would be subject to school disciplinary and legal action.

The investigation at the school discovered that the hacker obtained all students' directory information, current students' semester grades, semester grades for students of the last few graduating classes, and ACT exam marks for the current session.

Fortunately, there was no change made to data. The early investigation showed that the erring student did not access and copy other students' discipline records, Social Security numbers, or attendance or health data. He also did not access district financial data or personnel records. Meanwhile, it is not clear how the hacker managed to infiltrate the computer networks of New Trier.

But it is apparent that the hacker's objective was to find out the class positions of selected students and to tell them their individual rank. According to the e-mail statement, the school officials are certain that the student neither posted nor shared the data publicly.

Winnetka Police Deputy Chief Patrick Kreis said that his department is investigating into the computer tampering that took place at New Trier. He said that so far, neither any suspect is identified nor any arrest is made. But he said that a student is involved in the case. Suntimes published this in news on February 29, 2008.

Kreis said students' increasing ambitions are driving them to commit such crimes. In related news, Ryan Goldstein, Engineering junior admitted in the US federal court on February 29, 2008 that he assisted a hack into the computer network of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences in February 2006.

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