Ten-year-old hacker presents iOS and Android game exploit at DefCon

“A 10-year-old hacker who goes by the name CyFi uncovered a new exploit in iOS and Android games,” Kelly Hodgkins reports for TUAW.

“The time-based exploit lets you advance in a game by adjusting the clock on your phone or tablet,” Hodgkins reports. “The California girl discovered the flaw while playing an unnamed farming game.”

Hodgkins reports, “CyFi presented this information to DefCon Kids, a part of the popular DefCon hacking conference dedicated to the budding, young hacker.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Lynn Weiler” for the heads up.]


  1. And since when did a “cheat” for a game become an operating system EXPLOIT?? Come on… this is what sickens me about today’s journalism. Everyone sensationalizes…

    I’m thinking that the ability to grow corn faster is not making Steve Jobs lose sleep at night!!

          1. No they weren’t. Not to your average 10-year old, they weren’t. They existed, but were most definitely not available. Quit being so literal and use your powers of reason to understand the intent of what was said.

            1. … to your average 10 year old, but some 10 year olds could have wangled limited access. Universities, military bases, larger enterprises … these all had “mainframes”, some as smart as my dumb-phone. I was ~15, my dad had access to one, none of my peers ever SAW one.

      1. Forty years ago I could hack answer-only phones with no dials if I wanted to make a call, and it still works. (No disassembly required.)

        Thirty-five years ago I hacked command-line computers from any of its dumb terminals to expand the computer’s capabilities — with my workplace bosses’ permission.

    1. Allow me to correct your cheat code I believe the code was… Up up down Down left right left right b a b a select start now take your 100 lives and give them to this 10 year old prodigy…. Sure she didn’t hack into Microsoft and hit the kill switch but the fact that she is 10 and already finding exploits on smartphones! Y’all said it yourself when you were 10 kids didn’t do this… So instead of bashing her shouldn’t we be saying “wow that’s actually kinda cool” and also ” little girl you better stay the hell away from the playstation network” someone complained about journalism now I’m gonna complain about today’s society… Were all to quick to negatively judge people but get irate if people do it to us… Enough said

  2. Adjusting the clocks on “farming” type games, including Farmville and tiny towers, etc. is common knowledge. So I’m not sure how it qualifies as being presentation worthy. These days, if you mess with the system in any way they call it a hack. Standards are constantly being lowered, ya know?

    What I look forward to is the day that I walk into a room and there is little Tommy with his tablet, just pecking away, and when I ask what he’s doing he hands it to me and all I see is rows of cttaggcttgagaatcgattcattaagatcctatta… and when I ask what it’s for, he says, “I’m growing Fluffy a new tail cause the other one got run over by Mom’s car.” Now that’s hacking.

    Open source life… it’s coming.

    1. Sorry to burst your bubble but even if that was possible it wouldn’t be in our or our great great great great great greatx10 grandkids lifetime so you won’t b able to walk in and see little Tommy tinkering away on a tablet unless he is creating a tail for a virtual pet he has downloaded from the app store

  3. I can’t remember most of what I learned in college, but I could rattle off that “up down, up down” cheat code for the original Nintendo Entertainment System in my sleep!

  4. Well dang – I always have the clocks in my bathroom and car set a few minutes fast, to inspire me to hurry up in the morning. Guess that makes me a “hacker” too! After all, I’m “exploiting” these clocks to change my behavior…

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