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Makerere University: a University serves the community, NOT itself!

It is not long ago reports of a hacking incident at Makerere University’s academic department were all over the place. Apparently, some brilliant students found a short cut to getting that sought after first class by hacking into the University’s computer system, modifying their results to read first class even for papers they had not attempted.

Since Friday 24th July 2015, I have been trying to contact Makerere University School of Languages, Literature and Communications, specifically the department of Journalism and Communication in vain. I visited this site. Unfortunately, there are no contact details whatsoever. It is painful!

I would expect on the department’s webpage, the featuring of all professors in the department, top students, student leaders, success stories and contact details of each – social network contacts (LinkedIn and Twitter details), office line and official email address. And since these a professors, a Skype ID of instant contact would be in order.

The site, has a link, which I clicked. On this page, I saw the footer had contact us and happily clicked. However, the contact details on the page do not work; as shown in the screenshot image. All of the links listed in the footer are broken or useless. It this kind of poor set up of your web server that give a lot of information to a hacker, as they get to know more about your setup and the known vulnerabilities on your web systems.

Next steps

Makerere University School of Languages, Literature and Communications should urgently fix their website. Some hints:

  • We need a website that is functional NOT flashy or with irrelevant content. When I visit the Department of Journalism and Communication page, for example, I want to see faces of people whom I can contact and chat with NOT pictures which have nothing to engage me
  • People who want to partner with the University as sponsors, employers of your interns, and industry experts don’t have time to register. Want solid contacts to the decision maker – folks who can say YES and NO not those who can say NO, but have no authority of saying yes to any proposal.
  • Make the site interactive for real time chat and contact.

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