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May 5, 2016
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Facebook has a “bug bounty” program called White Hat that rewards people who discover bugs in their system. One of its most surprising winners is a 10-year-old kid from Finland whose hacking exploits in Instagram have earned him some cash. The boy was awarded $10,000 by the social media giant.

We need to say it again: A 10-year-old kid got $10,000, which is equivalent to P471,950, through hacking.

In an interview with the Finnish newspaper Iltalehti, Jani, whose last name wasn't disclosed for privacy reasons, said that he learned coding by watching YouTube videos, which eventually taught him how to delete user comments from Instagram accounts.

"I could have deleted anyone's comments from there. Even Justin Bieber's," he told.

Jani sent his discovery to Facebook via email. He verified his report by deleting a comment the company posted on a test account. In March, the company confirmed that it was indeed a bug and gave him his monetary reward.

The hacking prodigy, who dreams of working in data security one day, plans to use the reward to buy a new bike, football gear, and new computers for his brothers, he said in the interview with Iltalehti.

Last year, the White Hat program awarded $936,000 to 210 researchers and since its launch in 2011, it has awarded more than $4.3 million to 800 plus researchers around the world. The program doesn’t only apply to Facebook and Instagram as it also covers these other properties:

  • Internet.org/Free Basics
  • Moves
  • Oculus
  • Onavo
  • Open-source projects by Facebook
  • Parse

It’s time to watch hours of coding videos on YouTube, bros. 

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