10-year-old boy hacks Instagram and wins $10,000 reward

8:51 AM ETCNBC.comSHARES

10-year-old earns $10K reward for finding Instagram flaw

A 10-year-old hacker from Finland found a security flaw in Facebook’s photo-sharing app.

A 10-year-old hacker from Finland won $10,000 from Facebook after alerting the tech giant to a security flaw in its photo-sharing service, Instagram.

The boy, who lives in Helsinki and was identified only as Jani, found he could delete other people’s comments from Instagram using malicious code, according to Finnish newspaper, Iltalehti.

He alerted the service to this flaw and was paid $10,000 as a reward. Instagram said the vulnerability had been fixed.

“I would have been able to eliminate anyone, even Justin Bieber comments from there,” Jani said, according to a Google translation of the Iltalehti article.

Facebook operates a “bug bounty” program that rewards those who report vulnerabilities in its services, including Instagram.

Facebook has rewarded more than $4.3 million to more than 800 people under the program since it launched in 2011.

Jani plans to spend his money on a new bicycle and a football. According to Facebook’s own rules, he is too young to have an Instagram account, for which the recommended minimum age is 13.

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