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Hacker breaks into Guangdong exam website, offers to digitally change test scores

Posted: 08/7/2012 7:00 am

If hacking were an Olympic Sport, then China would be a sure thing for the gold medal. Late last year, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce fell victim to Chinese hackers, the latest in a line of sensitive websites that Chinese hackers are thought to have gained access to, leading Hillary Clinton to call it a very serious threat.

The latest attack was turned inward though, and theoretically had a very creative business purpose.  A youth was able to hack into the official website of the Personnel Examinations Bureau of Guangdong Province on August 1. On the navigation bar of the website, the hacker changed the “consultation” link to an advertisement which offered to digitally change people’s exam scores for RMB500 .  Despite the hacker’s claims, he only gained the ability to change the “consultation” bar and had no way to access the scores database, according to the Southern Metropolis Daily.

Visitors to the website found that all answers to questions given after clicking on “consultation” had been changed to “the spirit of hacking has never disappeared, but our beliefs have become slightly vague”, then a QQ number appeared saying “I will solve all problems for you.” Everything the hacker wrote has now been deleted.

The hacker claims that he still can alter the web data, but he refused to show reporters the process or explain how he could change exam scores.

Tampering with exam scores is common in China. Last week an official in Zhongshan lost his job and will face further punishment after it emerged that he had tampered with his son’s exam result to give him a better chance of becoming a government official.

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