When you think of hackers, you probably picture learned people with a bent of mind that revolves around the cutting edge realm of technology. Seldom would one ever consider a teenager or young adult from a village in India.
An Odisha villager, who is not even fluent in English, learnt the skill of hacking using an old smart phone and caused Rs 60 lakh loss to a city-based company by facilitating people make free telephone calls. He, however, landed in the police dragnet.
Cyberabad police said 19-year-old Himalaya Mohanty of Balasore district in Odisha hacked the EPABX toll-free number of Lloyd Electricals and Engineering Ltd in the city. After hacking it, he uploaded the code along with the toll-free number of Lloyd on a website hosted by him.
In November, Lloyd company had received a whopping Rs 60 lakh telephone bill for the toll-free number, which they operate for their customers, against the usual Rs 1 lakh per month.
Based on various forensic tests, cyber crime police located the IP address to a remote village in Balasore in Orissa and they picked up Mohanty. On questioning, Mohanty narrated the whole modus operandi besides his hacking journey.
Using his ‘3’ display mobile phone, he learned hacking skills and finally ended up hacking Lloyd’s toll-free number. “Mohanty enabled the option of outgoing facility by hacking into the system. He uploaded the link of Lloyd along with a code, which a user has to enter after dialling the toll-free number and followed by the number the person intends to call,” Cyber crime inspector Riyazuddin told STOI.
According to police, Mohanty, pursing ITI, posted on his website a message to contact him for learning hacking skills. “When people contacted him using their phones, he used to hack their phones by sending a Trojan (virus) and used to track their movements. However, all this was done by him without gaining financial benefit,” police said.
Mohanty, according to the report, has confessed that he learned hacking through various online forums and is able to hack Wi-Fi routers, email and Facebook accounts as well as smartphones.