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Merseyside Police: Student given suspended prison sentence for hacking LJM computers

September 17, 2012, 3:58 pm

A 22-year-old man from South Manchester has been given a suspended prison sentence after pleading guilty to hacking into the computers of Liverpool John Moores University.
Charantoor Kultaar Singh from Alexandra Road appeared at Liverpool Crown Court for sentencing today (Monday, September 17). He received a four-month prison sentence suspended for 18 months and was ordered to carry out 150 hours’ unpaid work.
At an earlier hearing on July 30, he pleaded guilty to an offence under section two of the Computer Misuse Act 1990 – gaining unauthorised access to a computer with intent to commit fraud by false representation.
Singh was arrested on April 30, 2012 by officers from the North West Hub of the Police Central e-Crime Unit (PCeU) for hacking into the computer systems of Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU).
The police investigation was in response to an allegation made in April 2012 that a suspect had compromised the logon credentials relating to students and staff.
Having compromised the credentials, Singh used those details in an attempt to obtain the examination papers for this years final pharmacy exams.
PCeU investigators, working closely with University staff, identified Singh, who was a fourth year student at the Universitys School of Pharmacy and Bimolecular Sciences.
University staff acted swiftly to ensure that the integrity of the examination process was preserved and that no unfair advantage was gained by any students. A number of examination papers were re-written and replaced.
The PCeU North West Hub was established in January 2012 by the Home Office working in conjunction with the National E-Crime Programme to combat serious incidents of computer hacking and cyber crime within the North West region.
DCI Janet Hudson said: ”This is the first prosecution brought about by the North West PCeU region and demonstrates our resolve to tackle serious cyber crime cases.
“This case is an excellent example of how PCeU staff work closely with partners to successfully identify suspects and bring them to justice.”
A spokesperson for Liverpool John Moores University said: “As demonstrated by the swiftness of the action taken by the University and subsequently the police, we are confident that the security of our internal systems is robust.
“We can confirm to all students and staff that the integrity of our assessment process has not been compromised and that no students were affected by this attempted breach of security.
“The University will continue to co-operate with and support the police in their fight against cyber crime.”

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