PUTRAJAYA: There were telltale signs of insiders’ involvement in a syndicate that hacked the Immigration Department’s computer system to issue fake temporary work permits (PLKS), but authorities could not wait until officers were identified to end the racket as national security was at risk, says Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) chief commissioner Datuk Seri Azam Baki (pic).
Both MACC and the Immigration Department said they would leave no stone unturned in busting the syndicate and officers who worked in cahoots with the syndicate would face the brunt of the law.
“I believe investigators have some leads now that the syndicate’s activities had been exposed.
“We will nab the culprits, ” he told The Star.Azam said he was aware of public expectation that action be taken against government officers for their involvement in corrupt activities and assured that investigations were underway to ensure culprits were booked.
He said although he and Immigration director-general Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud were convinced that officers from the department were involved in producing fake PLKS permits, the process of zeroing in on the culprits was not an easy task and was still ongoing.
Azam said routers were installed in the department’s computer rooms and officers’ passwords were leaked, which was an indication that this could only be done with the help of those from within the department.
“From our investigation, we are convinced that certain people inside the department are involved.
“There is an element of corruption going on that enabled the syndicate to hack the system.
“However, in corruption cases, the challenge is to ensure there is strong and clear evidence of who is giving bribes and who is accepting them.
“In this case, we are still narrowing down on who the insiders are, ” he added. Azam said the authorities had to move fast in this case because of its sensitivity.
“I told Datuk Khairul that while we look for the insiders, we cannot wait too long to act.
“We need to stop the operation because of the risk the syndicate’s activities have on national security, ” he said.
Azam praised the Immigration director-general’s dedication and commitment to act against “bad apples” in the department, his willingness to expose shortcomings in the department and the cooperation given to the MACC.
Last year, the department also extended its help to the MACC in smashing a syndicate – whose members also include Immigration officers – for providing “immigration services” to foreign workers and illegal immigrants.