Bhubaneswar: Utkal University authorities have cancelled online admissions following the hacking of its official website.
“There was a security breach of our website yesterday. We are not calling it hacking as there has been no data loss. The attackers have not been able to enter the e-admission website. 13,355 students have registered and all the data are secure. We had to block the e-admission website following the attack and the admission committee and the PG council meeting was convened today. The major decision taken during the meeting was to allow admission offline, which could be done only online earlier. Forms will be available in all the departments from today till May 19 between 10 AM and 5 PM. The students can apply and we have made provisions to give them admit cards immediately. Students have to submit a bank draft instead of the online payment, which was allowed in e-admission,” said PG council chairman Ranjan Bal.
“As far as the 13, 355 students who had registered for online admissions are concerned, the PG council has the e-mail and mobile numbers of the students. We have decided to send messages to inform them and an application form will be sent to them on their registered e-mail IDs. We have also made provisions to send the admit cards of these students from the respective departments,” added Bal.
“All the entrance tests, which were scheduled to be conducted in May, have been shifted to June. Entrance tests will begin from June 19, 2016 and will conclude by June 28, 2016. We have tentatively finalized the dates and an official correspondence in this regard will be issued soon. All the dates will be finalized by Tuesday evening. The last date for submitting application has also been shifted from May 14, 2016 to June 7, 2016. While June 7 was the last date for offline application, with this change, the last date for application in all formats have been shifted to June 7,” Bal said.
Commenting on the steps taken following the hacking attempt, Bal informed “The university authorities have already filed a case in connection with the earlier hacking with the Cyber crime branch and investigations are on. Investigation is taking time because a lot of foreign websites are involved in this attack. We already have security features embedded on our website and have also conducted security audit. Despite such step, the website security was breached again. Hence, this time we have decided that whatever steps are taken this time, they should be foolproof.”
Notably, this is the second time that the website of the State’s premier educational institution has been hacked. The State Crime Branch is probing the first incident.