Feeds

Chinese exam cheats employing spy-tech

Ancient tests, modern naughtiness

High performance access to file storage

More than 1000 cheats were caught in last year's Chinese civil-service exams, some using "spy technology" including micro earpieces - but it was conformity of answers that betrayed most of them.

The Chinese state media said 300 candidates were caught while sitting in the exam room, presumably trying to tune their micro-transceivers. Another 700 were picked out later for having remarkably similar answers, making 2008 a record year.

Criminal gangs often sell answers, or things that look like answers, to desperate candidates who are competing against an average of 56 other people for each job; or for one particularly popular post, against 4,699 other applicants.

China has had problems with high-tech cheating before. Back in 2006 the Chinese government threatened to use cellphone jammers after 1,700 prospective students were caught trying to cheat their way into college - and that was with a position-to-applicant ratio of one to four.

The state media doesn't give much detail of the technology picked up from the cheats, beyond saying that the majority of cheating took place in Beijing and the northern province of Liaoning. But it does appear that some of the equipment was designed only to receive broadcasts, which creates the wonderful image of Cheat FM: "Next up, answers to question 4, but first let's get into the groove with a bit of Adam Ant."

The Chinese civil service has employed on the basis of exam passes since Imperial times, and offers good employment opportunities to those who achieve the best results. Back then cheats were simply executed, on the basis that anyone caught cheating was inherently corrupt. These days you can get seven years in the slammer for being in possession of the questions prior to the exam, but the cheats will just find themselves on a database and be barred from retaking the exams for five years. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Forget the beach 'n' boardwalk, check out the Santa Cruz STEVE JOBS FOUNTAIN
Reg reader snaps shot of touching tribute to Apple icon
Happy 40th Playmobil: Reg looks back at small, rude world of our favourite tiny toys
Little men straddle LOHAN, attend tiny G20 Summit... ah, sweet memories...
Oz bank in comedy Heartbleed blog FAIL
Bank: 'We are now safely patched.' Customers: 'You were using OpenSSL?'
Lego is the TOOL OF SATAN, thunders Polish priest
New minifigs like Monster Fighters are turning kids to the dark side
Dark SITH LORD 'Darth Vader' joins battle to rule, er, Ukraine
Only I can 'make an empire out of a republic' intones presidential candidate
Chinese company counters pollution by importing fresh air
Citizens line up for bags of that sweet, sweet mountain air
Google asks April Fools: Want a job? Be our 'Pokemon Master'
Mountain View is prankin' like it's 1999...
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.