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Need opinions :(

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Rotten Apples, May 16, 2007.

  1. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    Yesterday, I found out that my brother got caught for hacking into the school system and changing his grades. He's in 10th grade. He was #6 in his school and trying to gain some points above the others (that still doesn't justify cheating the others).

    But I am trying to get him out of this mess. There was another kid who did it too and he got sent to alternative school.

    We have a meeting with the principal tomorrow. If my brother gets sent to alternative school, the case will be on his record, his grades drop to a 65 or 70 (only two choices because it depends on whether the teachers want to fail or pass him) and he has to go to alternative school.

    I hired a lawyer (I had to dig into $1000 of my own savings because my parents couldn't) and he said that they don't really have any circumstancial evidence against my brother (he reformated his pc before the techs had a chance to look at it).

    I don't know... I feel like I'm missing something. I really don't want my brother to have his future ruined :( Any suggestions sdn'ers? I'm sorry, I know this isn't the right forum for this but I didn't know where else to turn to. I've already asked some friends and talked the lawyer but ....

    also i think i've failed my english and chemistry finals by spending these last few hectic weeks bouncing between high school, lawyers, college and work.

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  3. Delicate Genius

    Delicate Genius Member 2+ Year Member

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    Aug 1, 2006
    What record will this go on, his high school record? Who cares. Maybe he can kiss his dreams of going to an ivy goodbye, but I am sure he will get accepted to a fairly decent college. After that, who gives two sh*ts what he did back in high school. Grad schools or future employers will never know about it, nor should they care.

    Sorry for the stress this is giving you, but I am pretty certain that his future is not ruined.

    PS: The fact that your brother had the knowledge and the balls to hack into his school's database suggests to me that he has the motivation and skill to succeed.
     
  4. LexiLuthor

    LexiLuthor 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    I know that you love him and are trying to help, but... he SHOULD be penalized for what he did.

    It's not about "cheating the others", it's the fact that he was cheating. And hacking. I have younger sibs and if it were one of mine I would be there for them to vent to but would expect them to take the consequences for their actions instead of trying to get them out of it. He clearly knew it was wrong.

    Your brother's future won't be ruined, even if he has to go to an alternative school. Hopefully it will serve as a lesson to him.
     
  5. spicedmanna

    spicedmanna Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    I think this is the larger problem here. Although it is difficult, given the gravity of your brother's situation, it is advisable for you to refocus on yourself. There is a limited amount of help you can offer before you compromise yourself, as you have already seen with your recent finals. Learn to let go, refocus and fix your academic problems, that's the best thing you can do. It is in the hands of his lawyers now. If his lawyers suck, get new ones. Unless you are a lawyer, you can't really help, but you can definitely hurt your chances of medical school acceptance (I'm assuming you are a college pre-med here). You can offer emotional and other minor forms of support, but not at the cost of your own potential. Besides, where are your parents in all this? Shouldn't they be involved more than you?
     
  6. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    thanks for the kind reply. you're right his future isn't ruined, but this whole year's grades drop to 70s :( the only problem is that the lawyer says that : when people say that your crime will be gone after 18, they don't realize that you have to expunge it. apparently expunging is when you call up every univ in your state and tell them in detail what you did. only after that does it go out of your profile.

    I REALLY hope he learns his lesson, my parents are giving him a guilt trip and he's so depressed. I will give him a guilt trip too but only after this thing is all done. Mostly because he's got exams all this week and I wouldn't prefer him to get his head wound up somewhere else.

    ... still... my mom was crying and pleading me to fix this. I've never seen her so sad :( my dad's disappointed but he cares mostly about the family name
     
  7. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007

    you are absolutely right. i should be focusing on my finals, i've been trying to but this came straight out of left field :( ARGH, you are right, i shouldn't waste my time trying to get all these things in order. like you said, it's in the lawyers hands now.

    today he asked me a really weird question... he asked me if I could do it, would i? i was about to say no but i ended up saying nothing. i wonder if i was a bad influence to him (i hacked when i was in high school, but NEVER the school system, i know how they could royally f*** you if they ever found out)
     
  8. Delicate Genius

    Delicate Genius Member 2+ Year Member

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    Aug 1, 2006
    Is he getting charged as a criminal by the state, or is he getting a slap on the wrist by the school? Whatever the matter is, he should still be fine. He's probably only like 16 years old. It's called maturity and learning from your mistakes. Everybody does stupid things when they are young. Although there is no justification for what your brother did, it still doesn't take away the fact that he is a child in the eyes of the state. Colleges will understand this, and hopefully he will shape up and give colleges a reason to forget this incident.
     
  9. spicedmanna

    spicedmanna Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Well, what's done is done. Focus on the here and now. You can't change the past, but you can set a good example now. Learn from your mistakes and past choices. Model responsible action.
     
  10. muncher

    muncher Junior Member 7+ Year Member

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    Sep 7, 2004
    Can you give a more detailed explanation of how he hacked the system. What OS and software was teh school using. You said he formatted his HD, so does that mean he gained access remotely? How did he get into the system? Key logger or brute force? Was there logging enabled on the system? Did he wipe the logs? All these things can come into play during the legal battle and they all have precedent. If you are serious about investing money to fight this case you should do some research and figure out your odds.
     
  11. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    ok well, first they keylogged a teacher's pc to get the administrator password, then they did a netbios scan and searched a few pc's till they came to a tech's pc, then they binded a keylogger to internet explorer so they got the tech's password (both email and to the school's database). he didn't need to wipe the logs because the changes were made under the tech's name (same guy who's now accusing him). the OS was windows and software was gradespeed.

    he reformatted his pc because when he was checking the tech's email he found out that they were about to go convict him later that day. so he got his pc reimaged and when they checked his laptop it was clean..
     
  12. notdeadyet

    notdeadyet Still in California Moderator 10+ Year Member

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    Jul 23, 2004
    If he thinks that reformating his HD wipes away any fingerprints, he's a worse hacker than you think. Most hacker get away with it because they don't get caught. Once a hacker's ID'd his odds in court go down like a lead zepplin.

    In lots of cases like these, the options boil down to fessing up and facing school disciplinary action or rolling the dice with the actual courts. Better to go with the former...

    Best of luck...
     
  13. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    well they haven't convicted him yet. apparently they want to sit down with our family first. the lawyer says that technically they don't have the power to send you to alternative school. I thought about this and it seems true because they had to get the mother's signature from the other guy who got caught to go to alternative school. still... at this point i think it's 50/50 even if my brother doesn't have much evidence against him.. mostly because schools can do whatever they want and his name's dirtied now for all his future teachers
     
  14. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    yeah, that's what the lawyer said. do you think he has a chance though, because he can't really be id'ed because he did all the changes through a tech ID and not his
     
  15. notdeadyet

    notdeadyet Still in California Moderator 10+ Year Member

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    Jul 23, 2004
    Look, if your kid brother was caught with a half an ounce of heroin and his options were to transfer schools or duke it out in court and risk a felony on his record, what would you advise?

    The school is probably going to offer a self-transfer to sweep it under the rug and not involve the courts (and the lawyer fees involved). If your family tries to go legal on them, the schools are going to just toss it to the legal system.

    I work with a lot of ex-hackers (though not as many as I used to). The percentage of hackers that get caught is very, very small. But those that do get caught have a tendency to go down. The trail they leave that leads to them is almost always admissable in court. Given that your brother was able to get caught hacking into a high school computer system (hardly the NSA) makes me think his day in court would probably be an ugly one.

    Worst case academic scenario: your brother is expelled from school and has to take the GED. He ends up going to a community college and can transfer to any four year college in the country if he does well enough.

    Worst case legal scenario: your brother goes to prison.
     
  16. CAS97209

    CAS97209 2+ Year Member

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    Feb 9, 2007
    If your brother is given the choice of staying at his high school and failing a year, or being transferred to an alternative school, he should ask himself if he even wants to stay at a school where the teachers will know what he has done and may possibly hold this against him.
     
  17. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    hey guys, just thought i should give you an update

    my parents and the lawyers met up with the principle and vice principle.
    man... there was no use arguing with the school. they have a system of their own.

    anyway, my brother's being sent to alternative school but it's not going to be on his record.


    i thought he would be ok with not having signed the confession but in a school, that doesn't matter. only when you're in court does it matter.


    so the end result is that he's going to alternative school :(
    i took another exam today, i think i did better than my other ones, although i didn't have much of a chance to study for this either :(

    i really screwed up with my priorities, i don't think i'll get into medschool. my priorities should have been my school > my brother.
    instead it was the reverse F*CK!!!
     
  18. spicedmanna

    spicedmanna Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Sorry to hear about all that. :(

    You can't change what already happened, though. You can, however, refocus now that you realize what you need to do, and work from here. There aren't too many problems that you can't make up for with some time and elbow-grease.

    I wish you the best of luck.
     
  19. RockShox

    RockShox 2+ Year Member

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    Nov 30, 2006
    hmmm....

    maybe you are just trying to leave out details because of time... but the the district att. charges people and the cops arrest them. They usually do this in complete secret and do not make a habit of emailing random tech support people the plans of criminal justice. The convicting part happens much later..say after a trial. On top of this the school must be in kanab or something because most IT departments automatically block access to all compromised accounts after it has been discoverd, somehow they forgot to change the email password or secure the login in question? Just trying to get it straight. That the trouble with medical training, they make you a very good history taker and as they say the devil is in the details.
     
  20. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    Thanks spicedmanna, I appreciate all your posts in helping me through this. Like you say, I just need to refocus. If I did fail an exam, it's not the end of the world i guess, but it'll definitely bring my grades down, but at least I can take it over summer or something. Maybe even take another higher level class instead of retaking it.
     
  21. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    lol ^ yeah i hear you :)

    well, i was in a hurry yesterday when i was typing it because i had only a few minutes before i started studying, but anyway: i didn't mean to write that the techs were going to convict him. instead when he was looking through their email account, he found that the guy who told on him had sent an email about this to the tech and the tech said that he would "do something about it". my brother got paranoid and went and got his computer reimaged by ANOTHER tech so as to not get his laptop taken up. so that solves the first question.

    second question about it departments shutting down compromised emails. they never knew that their email had been compromised. all my brother did had binded a custom keylogger he made in C (normal ones would trigger certain AV's) to internet explorer and got his password. but they never knew that he had their email accts. in fact they still don't :X

    i hope i answered your questions correctly.. i think i did...
     
  22. SketchLazy

    SketchLazy 5+ Year Member

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    May 16, 2007
    Hey if med schools don't see that you put an important matter such as your brother over your grades, than that probably means medical schools want selfish bastards as doctors and not real people that go through real problems. From your story, it's not like you just heard about what was going on with your brother and you were distracted. You took a proactive part in what was going on with your brother that took up your time and took you away from studying. I would have done the same damn thing. I mean this is your family your talking about here. As long as you fix it, and your passion is medical school and being a doctor, then you shouldn't give up on it. I don't know if a medical school would be too happy finding out your brother is a hacker who tried to influence his grades but if your not detailed about what happened and just say it was a family matter, they should take that experience in account when they are looking at your grades. Plus you can always kill on the MCAT and make up for it.
     
  23. Rotten Apples

    Rotten Apples 2+ Year Member

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    Apr 1, 2007
    Thanks SketchLazy! You're right, i'm a real person dealing with real life situations and as long as i'm not specific about my brother, then I can get away with it. Although I think i did bad this semester, I will just work harder!

    wow, i feel better :)
     
  24. MattD

    MattD Curmudgeon 7+ Year Member

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    Oct 9, 2003
    What country is this person in? Seems bogus to me, the story is a nonsensical hodgepodge of legal terminology in the school system. The school is sending him to the brick but it won't be on his record? BOGUS. Expunging it from his record involves calling up all the state universities and confessing? So if I had been caught selling crack when I was a minor, I would have to call up the UNIVERSITIES in the state and confess to get it off my record? BOGUS. Why would he need legal expunging for an administrative matter at the school anyway? It's not his CRIMINAL RECORD, it's his HIGH SCHOOL 'permanent' record. This is all bogus. It makes no sense.

    If you're not in the U.S.A., and all this crap works differently from here, then nevermind. But if you're making up a story, at least make it make sense.
     

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