North Eugene teenager arrested for 4J computer hacking

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In what will surely come as a relief to many parents, today the Eugene Police Department made an arrest in the 4J computer crime case.

Last month a breach in private student information caused an uproar in the 4J Eugene School District. Hundreds of angry parents flooded the district’s phone lines, distraught and eager to know if their children’s information was compromised. While the district did not know for sure, the hacker likely accessed personal information such as student ID numbers, addresses and in some cases phone numbers and Social Security numbers.

The district said,

“The data did not include any academic or financial information, such as grades, test scores or credit card numbers. The investigation of how the breach occurred is ongoing, but initial indications were that the person may have used a district computer workstation to access the data without authorization.

In response the 4J system notified police, initiated a thorough investigation of the security breach, and took measures to better safeguard information, including changing passwords, increasing password security, limiting the student personal data shared in the school meal system, and sequestering the Social Security numbers in their data systems

They also set up a website (www.4j.lane.edu/databreach) for parents to go to, in order to educate themselves on how to protect their children against compromised information.

Earlier today a 16-year-old male from North Eugene was arrested for this security breach. The police served a search warrant and charged the teenager with one count of Computer Crime. Investigators are still looking into the case after collecting evidence from his home. The police said,

“Based upon initial indications the overall risk to students’ information accessed in the breach appears low.  As investigators process the equipment gathered in the search warrant additional charges may be applicable.

This arrest comes in the midst of a wave of teen-related cyber crimes around the world, most notably Jack Davis from Scotland. Davis was arrested last month for hacking into a string of high profile websites, including the Serious Organised Crime Agency, a national law enforcement agency operating in the United Kingdom.

 

R.L. Stollar writes the Local Nation segment at EDN. He has a B.A. in Western philosophy and literature from Gutenberg College in Oregon and a M.A. in Eastern religions from St. John’s College in New Mexico. Follow him on WordPress (rlstollar.wordpress.com/), Twitter, (@RLStollar), or Facebook (facebook.com/rlstollarjournalist).

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