AU: Student Faces Two Years In Prison For Allegedly Hacking Frances Abbott’s Scholarship Information

Peter Terlato reports on a hack leading to a bit of a political flap:

A 21-year-old communications student from the University of Technology, Sydney has been charged with gaining unlawful access to restricted files which contained information pertaining to Frances Abbott’s $60,000 scholarship.

NSW Police issued a court summons to part-time librarian Freya Newman earlier this week, after receiving a complaint by the Whitehouse Institute of Design that its computer system was hacked on May 20.

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According to other sources, Newman was reportedly working as a part-time librarian at Whitehouse at the time. The Daily Mail reports:

The revelations sparked widespread outrage when it was revealed that the ‘chairman’s scholarship’, which covered most of Ms Abbott’s fees, had not been advertised and had only been awarded once before, to Billie Whitehouse, the daughter of the Institute’s founder and owner.

It was further revealed that Tony Abbott had not declared the scholarship on his pecuniary interests register, despite the fact that Les Taylor, the chairman of the school’s board of governors is a Liberal party donor and recommended Ms Abbott for the scholarship.

Mr Abbott has maintained that he had no reason to declare the scholarship because his daughter won it on merit.

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