TSPSC cyber flaws exposed, past exams also under scanner

HYDERABAD: The TSPSC question paper leak has exposed a glaring lapse in the commission’s workings, as computers and software used to store question papers were not protected by firewalls, making all sensitive information vulnerable to exploitation by cybercriminals, according to sources in the SIT that is probing the case.

This has also brought into question the authenticity of the examinations conducted by the TSPSC over the years, since Telangana came into existence.

While the commission installed a firewall a few weeks before the scam came to light, the same was under the control of Atla Rajashekar, the network administrator of TSPSC, who has been arrested as the main accused in the case.

Sources said that the computers used in the commission, including in the confidential section that stored question papers for various entrance examinations, did not have anti-virus software and firewall. This is how the paper in the scam was copied onto a pen drive, they said.

The investigation also found that access to sensitive information and confidential computers was not restricted, which made the job of the two TSPSC employees, Pulidindi Praveen Kumar and Rajashekar, easier.

Subsequently, the papers were supplied to several individual parties, officials said.

Officials are now probing if any of the examination question papers conducted over the years were leaked.

An SIT official, requesting anonymity, said: “Usually, not only the computers with such vital information are secured, but the premises holding them, every folder and file are protected through specific passwords. Every entry and exit to these areas and the number of times they are accessed would also be captured round-the-clock.”

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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