Teenager jailed for hacking toll-free number leading to exorbitant bill for companies

Teenage years are meant to be the adventurous years in your life. But some adventures are just taken too far by some teenagers. A teenager in Odisha, India was arrested after his cyber adventures put in soup with the Cyberabad Cyber Crime Police. The teenager was sent to jail in Hyderabad according to sources who are close to the matter.

Teenager jailed for hacking toll-free number leading to exorbitant bill for companiesThe teenager, whose name is Himalaya Mohanty is from the Shibapura village where he was arrested in, by the Khantapada police in the Balasore district. He was then taken to a transmit which is in Hyderabad. Sudarshan Dash, Khantapada IIC said in a statement that Mohanty had been arrested and sent to the local court which was in the district on the 25th of May. After his court appearance, he was given a three-day remand period by the court. The court was in Hyderabad.

Cyberabad also confirmed that the teenager had been sent to court after which he had been sent to jail.

So what did the 19-year old do? The ITI student from a Soro based Institute hacked a toll-free number of one of the companies that are located in Hyderabad. The multinational company involved is Lloyd Electrical and Engineering Limited, and it says the endeavor by Mohanty cost them an exorbitant bill which was around Rs. 60 lakh, nearly $90,000.

Mohanty managed to break the code meant for the EPABX (Electronic Private Automatic Branch Exchange) and after that, he put details of his findings on a public forum, which meant the users who saw the information could call the number without incurring any charges. Surprising enough the teenager learned the trade of hacking from websites, even though he is not so fluent in English. He apparently hosted a website from his smartphone.

In a police release, it was alleged that when the teenager registered himself on these various websites and forums which were meant for hacking, he would use the translator tool to understand the information better. The police believe he did not gain financially in any capacity through this method, and he even told police officers that the act was just for fun.

The multinational company surprisingly received a huge bill of Rs 60 lakh, after which they lodged a complaint with the Cyber Crime Police. After investigations, the police managed to trace back the crime to the village in the Balasore district.

Renee Biana

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