Miami high school student is arrested… for hacking into school report card system and changing him grade

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If your grades are bad, the only thing to do is be honest enough to admit that you failed. You tell your parents and try again next time. Study hard. You don’t go hacking that school’s online report card system to show that you did good.

Apparently, a high school senior in a Miami school did so by accessing the school’s system illegally. He’s been arrested on his claims of accessing the system to change his grades and of four other students. Eighteen-year old Jose Bautista, appeared last Friday in court to face intellectual proper offence charges. Reportedly, Bautista modified his grades and other students whom he approached allegedly. These students detailed the hacking in a written confession as shared by Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School’s principal.

Bautista didn’t deny the accusations. He is currently under house arrest, wearing a GPS monitor, and with a bond of $20.000. No mention though if he and the four other students will be punished and will be allowed to graduate or not.

Miami-Dade Schools released this statement regarding the incident:

“The school district takes incidents like this very seriously.  In addition to the arrest and ongoing criminal investigation, the Code of Student Conduct provides for corrective strategies up to and including recommendation for expulsion.”

End of May graduation is fast approaching. The school administration better make a decision of Bautista and his friends will graduate. There is hope.

[via Ars Technica]

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6 comments

  1. deadseth

    ok. i can relate. sorta.
    now back when i was in jr high, the computers that were avalible were the “green screen” apple ][gs’s. these were both for students and facilty. well. anyone who remembers that time also knows that the attached printers (nifty dot matrix printers) were used for school work and for teachers use. so my point is this. when i was in that “failing” time of my life. instead of attempting any local hacks or evensome mission impossible ideas, i decided that it was simply easier to print myself off a new report card. they used e same printers for thier official reports do i just dummied up my own. this worked for all of two months then it turns out at a parent teacher conf, my folks called my bluff and found out my real grades.
    but. this was far easier than when my brother was in school, that old “re-mark a f grade into a b with a pen” and less involved of a caper since i had no real option of accesssing thier data with out a local attempt (sitting infront of a needed pc).
    ok. thats it.
    bye

    -deadseth
    “i die alot!!”

  2. Realist

    First, this wasn’t exactly the crime of the century and no one would’ve been harmed at all if it had gone undetected. If the school had an insecure computer system, it’s their fault and anyone bright enough to exploit it without getting caught deserves the reward for such. This perp’s problem was that he got greedy for fame, money or whatever and started telling folks of his exploits.

    The value of an education is that it prepares you, not so much for specific knowledge, but to understand and succeed within the system; working around it when necessary. This is a great case in point and the lesson for all involved is that they are not nearly as smart as they think they are. Sadly, the wrong lessons will no doubt be learned here:

    The school’s takeaway from this is probably that all they need do is punish their exploiters severely. The perp’s takeaway is probably not to find a way around the system. Neither does either much good.

    Memo to the school: Protect your damned computers and fire the incompetent clowns who left you vulnerable.

    Memo to the perp: Don’t cause any financial or physical harm with your skillz and keep your damned mouth shut.

    Memo to the Florida justice system: Make this go away.

  3. kevbo

    [@Mike S.]

    Yes, but changing the grade on your report card to fool your parents is a little bit different than changing your transcripts. However, I do agree with your sentiments regarding what I see as trend in our ‘tolerant’ society to criminalize the childish behavior of children.

  4. Mike S.

    Ummm, this is a surprise? Kids have changed grades on report cards since whenever, and hacking into school computers in the movies since who knows when.

    Of course, this kid shouldn’t have done what he did. But, please, treat him as what he is: a kid. And get/keep him on the right track, and not make him into a professional criminal.