Ministry hacker let free on lack of evidence

Director General's office computer was used to hack system

The Dubai Misdemeanour Court acquitted an ministry employee of hacking the Ministry of Education’s database because of lack of sufficient evidence.
In the previous hearing, the technical expert assigned to identify the computer used in hacking the ministry’s electronic system in April assured that the machine was the one in the office of the Director General in Abu Dhabi.
However during a 45 minutes of testimony, the expert could not assure that the accused was the one who hacked the ministry’s database.
“I cannot assert that the accused was the one who committed the hacking although his office is opposite the Director General’s office,” the expert told the court in a previous hearing.
The expert told the court that the hacking was done from a Siemens PC in the office of the Director General in Abu Dhabi.
Dubai Prosecution has filed the misdemeanours of unduly logging into the information system, deleting personal data, and hindering the reach to the electronic service against HSH, Egyptian, employee.
According to the police report of the Electronic Criminal Investigation Department in Dubai Police prepared by Major Saeed Al Hajiri, the police received a notification from the Legal Affairs Department at the Ministry of Education about the ministry’s website being hacked and some personal information including the electronic emails of the employees, the camera system in the server room and their backups being deleted.
The ministry asked Alpha Data, Microsoft, Symantec, HP and Itqan to investigate the problem. The companies found that the saving unit was hacked at 8am through a user name and a computer from the ministry’s office in Abu Dhabi.
Police inquired with the Support and IT Department and found that the user name was of HSM who was in the ministry in Dubai and then was moved to Abu Dhabi. Police were also told that he was the only one who was fully aware of the ministry’s electronic programmes and the secrete number of the chief user of the backups.
On April 11, the ministry issued a statement made by its Director General Mehad Al Suwaidi denying that the ministry was subject to hacking but that a virus hit the system on April 5 and damaged some documents and data and caused the interruption of the electronic service between the ministry and the Educational Zones. The statement also said that the problem was solved and all files have been retrieved on April 7.
The court did not find sufficient evidence to charge the ministry’s employee.

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