Student hacks into school’s computer system


SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 Utah) –  A teen claimed boredom caused him to hack into a school’s computer network.

It happened during last year’s school year at Taylorsville High School.  But the case was recently unsealed by a judge.  

The 18-year-old who doesn’t want his name disclosed said he has not been charged with a crime but has been told the case is still under investigation.

“I very much regret what I did,” J.D. said.  “If I could go back I definitely would stop myself and others from engaging in that sort of thing.”

The teen said he was a member of a school club called “Cyberpatriots.” The group competed with other high schools testing their computer skills.  He said their team nearly received top honors last year.

But after the competitive season ended, the teen said he became bored.

“When it came to decoding websites I got a little bored so instead I would do malware and found it fun how it would mess up the computer, all the controls and the reactions you would get from people,” he said.

But according to a search warrant from Granite School police, it went from fun to criminal.

He’s accused of changing student’s grades, getting personal information of teachers, changing their profiles and sending political mass emails to students and parents.

“We would go in there, mess with the grades, mess with whatever we could and we didn’t care who it was,” he said.  “We would never change our own grades.  Ours was fine.  It was mainly for reactions.”

But the school caught on and after months of investigation, J.D. said he and others were expelled.   He said the district was justified.

“I put those teachers and students in a lot of trouble,” he said.  “And now thinking about it and I can now reflect on the paranoia and whatever you get when you get hacked, it’s just an awful feeling.”

A spokesman for the Granite School District said in a text the student was “safe schooled and charged.”  We make regular enhancements but it was our security and systems that caught him.”

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