Russian Hacker Arrested in India for Breaking into Exam Platform and Helping JEE Students

India’s Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested a Russian national for allegedly helping students cheat in JEE-Main Exam. Reports say the accused, manipulated software of JEE Main examination.

The Joint Engineering Exam or JEE Main, is a computer-based exam conducted across the country to determine admission to engineering colleges including the prestigious IITs.

In this case, the accused had purportedly tampered with the iLeon software (the platform on which the JEE (Main)-2021 examination was conducted) and that he helped other accused in ‘hacking the computer systems of suspect candidates’ during the examination. 

Allegations of Irregularities Being Committed in the JEE (Mains) Exams 

The Indian news reports recognized the person as ‘Mikhail Shargin’. Reports say the hacker helped the students to get admission in top NITs.

In 2021, the Russian, Mikhail Shargin, hacked into the software for the exam which was provided by world-renowned TCS or Tata Consultancy Services, said sources in the CBI.

Particularly, he had hacked TCS Software which was the platform for the JEE Mains Exam to provide remote connectivity to control computer terminals of candidates appearing for the exam.

According to CBI, “Facilitating aspiring students to get admission in top NITs in consideration of huge amount by solving the question paper of the applicant through remote access from a chosen examination centre in Sonepat(Haryana)”.

The accused get hold of Xth and XIIth mark sheets, the User IDs, Passwords, and Post Dated Cheques of aspiring students in different parts of country as security. Hence, after the admission, hacker charged heavy amount ranging from 12-15 Lakh (approx) per candidate.

Earlier, a case was registered and the staff of a private coaching institute named Affinity Education, which was located in Uttar Pradesh’s Noida, had solved the question paper for students who paid them between 12-15 lakh each.

Airport authorities were aware that he was wanted for rigging last year’s exam which took place in September. Reports say almost 10 lakh students took the exam.

The CBI says it conducted searches at 19 places last year across the cities of Delhi, Pune, Jamshedpur, Indore, and Bangalore, leading to the seizure of 25 laptops, seven PCs, along with other incriminating evidence.

Nearly, 20 students were believed to have cheated and were barred from taking the exam for the next three years.

“They said accused was detained by the Bureau of Immigration at IGI Airport, Delhi while arriving in India from Almaty, Kazakhstan. A Look out Circular was opened against him”, CBI.

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Gurubaran is a co-founder of Cyber Security News and GBHackers On Security. He has 10+ years of experience as a Security Consultant, Editor, and Analyst in cybersecurity, technology, and communications.