Twelve-Year-Old Hacker Traded Secrets for Video Games

A 12-year-old Canadian boy reportedly was the mastermind behind a hack that brought down government web sites during the 2012 Quebec student protests, according to an report.

The unnamed fifth grader managed to take down multiple Canadian government web sites including the Quebec Institute of Public Health, and even Chilean government site. His targets were down for several days, according to reports, even as police clashed with college students in the streets over tuition hikes in a 2012 protest.

Reports also indicate that the 12-year-old managed to lift some information from the sites, which he reportedly traded with hacktivist collective group Anonymous in exchange for video games, according to several sources.

Police claimed in a Canadian court on Thursday that the boy caused an estimated $60,000 in damages. The lawyer representing the boy, who appeared with his father to face charges, said that his actions were not politically motivated.

"He saw it as a challenge, he was only 12 years old," his lawyer said. "There was no political purpose," as quoted by Toronto Sun.

A police expert testified to the court that the boy, who has allegedly been hacking since he was nine, was practicing three basic types of attacks including a Distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack, taking over web servers and altering them, and exploiting security holes to access database servers.

Others involved in the hacking attack have reportedly been arrested.

"And he told others how to do it," a police expert testified in Montreal court on Thursday.

A detailed report into the allegations will be handed over to the court next month when the 12-year-old is expected to be sentenced. He has pled guilty to the charges.


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