Students who signed up for ConnectCarolina 2.0, a website that promised to improve on the ConnectCarolina model, woke up yesterday morning to a nasty surprise — they were unable to access Sakai, Heelmail or UNC’s Wi-Fi.
Hundreds of students went to the Information Technology Services office Tuesday night and Wednesday to get a new Onyen and password, said Ramon Padilla, deputy chief information officer for ITS.
But the creator of ConnectCarolina 2.0, UNC junior Winston Howes, said he wants the student body to know he is sorry.
“It wasn’t our intention. We were just trying to make a better and more secure ConnectCarolina experience,” said Howes, a computer science major.
Howes said he was inspired to create the website after hearing complaints about the ConnectCarolina site, which holds all of students’ academic information, including their class schedules.
“I had a free week and thought, ‘Hey, I should knock this out,’” he said. “I tried to make it easier and more secure and be how I thought a class system should be, making it faster.”
Howes said anywhere between 600 and 1,000 students signed up for the service once it was launched Tuesday. The site was up for 27 hours before ITS blocked the IP address Tuesday night, he said.
Howes said he used the Onyen and password to log into people’s accounts, but he did not keep data about people’s passwords.
“I’ve talked to ITS and we realized there’s a misunderstanding there,” he said. “But what’s right on the forefront of their minds is user security.