BHUBANESWAR: The Commissionerate of Police on Monday tracked down a student of a private engineering college for allegedly hacking the official website of Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT).
The student, a self-confessed ethical hacker, was identified after police traced his internet protocol (IP) address and proceeded to zero in on the system and internet user IDs. “He is being interrogated now,” Police Commissioner Dr RP Sharma said.
Earlier, police analysed over 400 IP addresses to track down the server to narrow down the system and internet IDs. “We used resourceful officers who have necessary skills in cyber security to find systems which could be used to hack the university’s website,” he said. The investigation was also pointed at identifying if the computer system used was a private one or the hacker used a cyber cafe.
Police believe that the intention may not have been to cause any damage or theft of data but to indulge in adventure of hacking into a network, Sharma said. Another angle probed by the police was if an ethical hacker tried to break into the OUAT network to signal that the university’s firewalls and cyber security systems are weak and need fresh auditing. It is this angle of investigation which has prompted police to suspect that a student or a group of students, interested in ethical hacking, may be behind the incident.
“Even if it is a student who is into ethical hacking, necessary legal action will follow,” the Police Commissioner said. Basing on the complaint filed by Registrar of OUAT RK Das, a case was registered under Sections 65 and 66 (C) of the Information Technology Act with Khandagiri police. The offence attracts imprisonment up to three years. “Since the offence is less than seven years, the student will be served a notice and not arrested,” sources said.
On January 15 evening, the www.ouat.ac.in was hacked following which the university deactivated the server.