ROME, June 19 (Xinhua) -- Three students have been found by Italian police for attempting to hack into the website that contained the evidence and solutions for one of the tests of final exam in middle school, media reports said on Thursday.
Local authorities identified three teenagers, two of which were reportedly minors, who introduced illegally into the website of the Invalsi quiz, the national final exam for Italian middle schools, according to police sources quoted by ANSA news agency.
The three of them reportedly replaced the website's homepage with a pornographic image at first and then tried to acquire the quiz questions. The computer attack made the site temporarily unavailable.
The investigation, which was conducted by the national center for computer anticrime critical infrastructure protection, led to identification of the IP addresses that were being used by the hackers.
Police made searches in Udine, Genoa and Treviso, three cities in northern Italy where the teenagers were reportedly living, and seized numerous computers and other devices, ANSA said.
Invalsi since 2009 has been part of the three-year middle school's final exam in Italy, which besides the quiz also includes written tests in Italian language, mathematics and foreign languages.
The Invalsi quiz, which is the same throughout the country, is divided into two parts including Italian language and mathematics. All questions must be answered within 150 minutes without the help of dictionaries or calculators.
"On Thursday, the Invalsi quiz was regularly carried out by nearly 600,000 middle school students across Italy," Education Minister Stefania Giannini was quoted as saying by ASCA news agency late on the day.
"Those responsible for the attack were identified thanks to the immediate alarm launched by the staffs working at the Invalsi quiz, who uncovered the intrusion" and collaborated with police forces, she added.
School in Italy is compulsory from 6 to 16. The education system, which includes both public and private schools, is divided into kindergarten, primary school, lower secondary school also known as middle school, upper secondary school and university.