Among the predominantly male crowd of hackers and cybersecurity researchers at last week's DefCon hacking conference in Las Vegas, an unlikely hero stole the spotlight.
A 10-year-old hacker from California who goes by the online handle CyFi announced in a presentation Sunday to the DefCon Kids crowd that she had discovered a bug in several games for Apple iOS and Google Android smartphones, CNET reported.
The vulnerability CyFi discovered has to do with time-processing factors in farm-themed smartphone games. The girl told CNET the flaw she found was borne out of her own frustration with the slow pace of these games.
"It was hard to make progress in the game, because it took so long for things to grow," she told CNET. "So I thought, 'Why don't I just change the time?'"
Doing so forced the game further ahead, exposing the exploit.
(To allow the game companies time to fix the errors in the Android and iPhone games, CyFi is not revealing the specific games that contain this flaw.)
Apparently CyFi has talents that extend beyond cybersecurity research: she told CNET she is a state-ranked downhill skier, a Girl Scout and has performed a spoken-word piece before 1,000 people at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.