[ISN] Brookfield student accused of hacking

From: InfoSec News (isn@private)
Date: Wed Dec 14 2005 - 13:14:22 PST

Forwarded from: William Knowles <wk@private>


ddoege @ journalsentinel.com
Dec. 13, 2005

Waukesha - Brookfield police this week seized computer gear from the 
home of an 18-year-old student who said he illegally accessed Elmbrook 
School District computer records, according to documents filed in 
circuit court Tuesday.

The student told a police detective investigating the computer 
break-in that he used "password cracking" software to access district 
records, then obtained an administrator's password, "which allowed him 
further access to confidential computer records," according to an 
affidavit used by investigators to obtain a search warrant for the 
teen's home.

The affidavit indicates that a police investigation into a school 
district computer break-in began in August and that at least one other 
student obtained the illegal access.

When police visited the 18-year-old student's home Monday, according 
to the affidavit, he and his parents allowed investigators inside, but 
they refused permission to seize personal computers they had in the 

After obtaining a search warrant later in the day, police returned to 
the family's home Monday night and left with four computer towers, a 
laptop computer, discs, papers and other equipment, according to an 
inventory attached to the warrant and affidavit when they were filed 
in Waukesha County Circuit Court Tuesday afternoon.

Elmbrook School Superintendent Matthew Gibson said Tuesday that two 
Brookfield Central students were believed to have been involved in the 
computer break-in and that both have been suspended.

Gibson said he did not yet know the depth of the students' access into 
district records and whether any damage was done or sensitive 
information was compromised.

"It's difficult to respond to questions right now because it's early 
in our investigation," Gibson said.

The police affidavit provides the following information:

Brookfield Central High School Principal Donald Labonte met with 
police Aug. 25 and reported that several days earlier, he received an 
e-mail from a student who questioned the calculation of her grade 
point average and class ranking.

Labonte told police that he was aware of "an incident at Brookfield 
East High School where school computer security had been compromised 
through access to the computers without consent."

Police subsequently began a probe aimed at determining whether 
"students or others" accessed district records.

The student whose home was visited by police on Monday said that he 
"watched another student illegally access" district records in April. 
The student said that after he subsequently gained access, he 
downloaded the password cracking software to his flash drive device 
and later to a personal computer in his home.

 2005, Journal Sentinel Inc. All rights reserved

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