Roy Chaoran Sun one of the accused graduated with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering in May 2010, having lowest grades of a handful of B’s. The rest were A’s and A pluses.
The other two, Mitsutoshi Shirasaki, an aeronautics and astronautics major from Japan, going from failing to A’s and B’s. Two A’s that he actually earned, for classes in Japanese and aeronautics and astronautics engineering, were upped to A pluses. While, Sujay Sharma, a nuclear engineering major, only changed one of his grades, from a D to an A, but he’s also accused of accessing course tests and of acting as a lookout for Shirasaki. Both were seniors in the Institution until their schemes were discovered and kicked out.
How it Happen?
It involved physically breaking into professors’ offices and switching their computer keyboards with identical ones. The suspects allegedly installed key logging devices to the original keyboards, then broke into professors’ offices again to replace the original keyboards. The key logging devices allowed the suspects to figure out their professors’ account passwords.
On November 2012, their scheme was discovered when one professor told the IT security services department that someone had changed his password.
Information Technology at Purdue officials learned that the professor’s account was accessed to change a student’s grade.
Shirasaki became the suspect since he used the institutions Wi-Fi network with his own account when he hacked into the professor’s account to change a grade from C to B.
Purdue has alarms in place that can detect if a computer or even a keyboard is moved from computer labs, Cox said, but alarms did not go off in any of the thefts from professors’ offices.
Throughout the investigation of the incident, representatives found the other two alleged hackers.
The students have been charged, among other things, with conspiracy to commit burglary, conspiracy to commit theft, conspiracy to commit computer tampering, attempted burglary, burglary, forgery, and computer tampering Newspedia reports.