Carleton University hacker nabbed

AEDAN HELMER -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:42 AM ET

Carleton University went into damage control mode yesterday after a hacker breached a secure e-mail system and revealed personal passwords of 32 students.

The student, who was identified as an undergraduate math student, sent a brazen letter to administration last week claiming responsibility, and suggested the university tighten network security.

Computer systems officials tracked down the student, and university security brought him in for questioning yesterday.

Officials said the student is co-operating fully and has handed over all materials obtained in the breach.

"He said he was just doing it to expose the system," said university spokesman Christopher Walters. "He claimed there was no malicious intent."

CAMPUS CARDS

The hacker obtained personal information from the students by accessing their Campus Cards, which are used to buy food and other items on university grounds.

They can also be used to access several residence floors, though not individual rooms. The university is now reassessing residence access.

Walters said while the incident is not considered a "deep infiltration" of the network, university officials are taking the case very seriously.

The student faces disciplinary action, including suspension or expulsion. Police are also investigating.

"This was a very funny way to highlight a weakness in a network ... He's in deep trouble right now," said Walters.

The breach marks the second incident in two months that Carleton's e-mail system has been compromised.

Carleton University Students' Association president Brittany Smyth said while students on campus are concerned, most are glad the flaw has been corrected.

"We hope (the hacker) doesn't get in too much trouble," she said. "Much better him than someone with bad intentions."


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