ÖSYM officials said in cases where test takers were caught cheating during exams, the individual’s results would be nullified. However, in cases where there is suspicion that the questions were leaked prior to the test, the entire examination may be canceled.
Allegations were put forth that 108 people had been texted the answers of the test via their cell phones. This comes shortly after 37 people, including an associate professor, were taken into custody after simultaneous operations in 10 Turkish provinces late Saturday as part of an investigation into allegations of cheating on the State Personnel Examination (KPSS) -- an examination to select bureaucrats for employment in public agencies. Twenty-five people were detained in southern Adana in connection with the scandal.
The YGS, held on April 11 this year, is the first of two exams necessary to gain admission to university. More than 1.5 million students take the test, but a recent investigation has revealed that answers had been SMSed to people in 16 different provinces in Turkey.
The probe was launched after an anonymous caller tipped of the Eskişehir police Department that the YGS answers had been sent to an individual named Metin Gökçen. Gökçen’s phone was then seized by police who were able to confirm that two SMS messages providing answers to the test’s math section were sent to his phone at 11:50 a.m. and 11:51 a.m. -- the time during which the test was being administered. The police also found that 30 out of the 34 answers sent in the SMS message were correct. The police also established that Gökçen relayed the messages he received to İbrahim Çiftçi, a test taker in Bursa.
The police investigation found that the correct answers had initially been texted by an individual named Özcan Ece, who in turn received the responses from Yusuf Kaya, in Diyarbakır.
The technical investigation revealed that 108 people across 16 provinces had been sent the results. The police investigation is now continuing in Diyarbakır, İstanbul, Ankara, Şanlıurfa, Şırnak, Mersin, Afyon, Çanakkale, Gaziantep, Adana, Manisa, Sinop, Batman, Bursa, Kocaeli and Amasya, where the test takers who cheated were detected.
Police are also investigating whether the test takers who provided answers could be connected to any terrorist organizations.