UI student arrested and charged with hacking school system to change grades

He was found responsible for the HawkID hack back in January

Former University of Iowa student Trevor Graves, 22, was arrested last week and charged with hacking into the UI computer system to change his grades.

Earlier this year in January, the University of Iowa issued a statement urging the student body to change their HawkID passwords after approximately 250 students, faculty and staff had their information compromised as the result of a hack. The hack was discovered when a keylogger devices were found attached to computers in UI classrooms and computer labs.

Graves has been charged as the individual responsible for the January hack and for allegedly using the compromised information to "escalate his privileges within the school's computer system," allowing him to alter grades, a privilege only teaching faculty and staff may have.

According to the FBI, Graves changed his own grades more than 90 times over a span of nearly two years. He also changed the grades of at least five other students on numerous occasions.

The FBI became involved and began an investigation shortly after UI discovered the hack in January. This resulted in a search of Graves' residence, where two keyloggers and additional computer equipment were found.

After conducting a forensic investigation of the confiscated equipment, the FBI discovered texts that are believed to discuss how Graves' used the compromised information to change grades on assignments, everything from homework to quizzes and even exams.

Graves was arrested last Tuesday in Denver, Colorado and released on bond, as he will be appearing in court here in Iowa this upcoming Thursday.

Graves is charged with "intentionally accessing a computer without authorization to obtain information, and knowingly transmitting a computer program to cause damage." Both of these charges possess a maximum sentence of ten years in prison.

University of Iowa cybercrime Trevor Graves University of Iowa