Dawson student expelled for trying to help the school system
by alexis1solis on January 28, 2013 - 1:58am
At Dawson College, a computer science student named Hamed Al-Khabaz was expelled after discovering a security breach in a system used by students across Quebec. Al-Khabaz and a fellow student had discovered the breach by accident. They had discovered that by exchanging other student numbers in the encrypted links, they could easily obtain information such as the social insuranc numbers, home addresses and phone numbers of more than 250,000 students. Al-Khabaz said that he had informed the school immediatley after discovering the problem and was congratulated for the discovery. A couple of days later, Al-Khabaz says that he ran a program again in order to check if the school had fixed the problem, and immediately after, he had received a phone call from Skytech, the makers of the Omnivox software. They had informed him that he had launched a cyberattack on the site that could result in jail time unless he signs a non-disclosure agreement. Al-Khabaz had agreed to sign the agreement because he did not want to go to jail. Skytech had released this information to the school and they decided to expel him for breaching the schools's code of conduct. He was trying to help the school and now that he has been kicked out and he is scared of never being able to finish his program or to even be ale to attend school again. Luckly, he had been offered a schorlarship to a private schools by the company behind the software and has also been offered a part-time job in information technology security. (CBC News, January 21,2013, "Company offers schorlarship to Dawson student who exposed security flaws" ). http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/story/2013/01/21/montreal-dawson-college-hack-hamed-al-khabaz.html?cmp=rss
Personally, I believe that what the school did towards the student is completely wrong because if he actually would have tried to hack the system or launch a cyberattack, he wouldn't have informed the school about it. He would have kept it to himself and everything would have been good, but he wanted the school to know about the problem which is why he told them. If I would have been in his shoes, unless the school would have warned me to not do it again, I would have tried to hack in again in order to see if the school fixed the problem. In this case the school did not warn him and he has every reason to go see if the problem was fixed. Also, why would the company offer him a job, schorlarship and not report him to the authorities ? This prove's to us that he is not guilty, and what Dawson College has done is wrong.
I enjoyed this article because first of all it is an interested story, and I could not have imagened that a school would be able to expel a student who was trying to help. Also, I cannot imagen that they are able to give him zero's in all of his grades when he was only trying to help. If I could do something about it, I would try to throw a little campaign in order to help Dawson changed it's mind and allow the student to attend school again!!