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Five-year-old boy exposes Xbox One password flaw, gets free games from Microsoft

James Temperton
4 Apr 2014
Xbox One
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A five-year-old boy from San Diego discovered that he could bypass his dad's Xbox Live password by pressing the spacebar

A five-year-old boy found that he could access his dad's Xbox Live account by going to the password verification screen and pressing the spacebar lots.

Kristoffer Von Hassel, from Ocean Beach in San Diego, was found playing games he wasn't allowed to with his parents wondering how he had got around the password protection.

Kristoffer's father Robert noticed his son using his Xbox Live account to play games he wasn't meant to be playing and asked his son how he had done it. The five-year-old gamer showed that by typing in the wrong password he could then bypass the password verification screen by pressing the spacebar.

"I got nervous. I thought he was going to find out," Kristoffer told local television station, KGTV.

Kristoffer's father, who works in computer security, was impressed with his son's efforts:

"Just being five years old and being able to find a vulnerability and latch onto that. I thought that was pretty cool."

Father and son contacted Microsoft who fixed the flaw. In a statement the company thanked Kristoffer for spotting the loophole.

"We take security seriously at Xbox and fixed the issue as soon as we learned about it."

For his work Kristoffer will receive four games, $50 and a year-long subscription to Xbox Live from Microsoft. His name now appears on a page set up by Microsoft to thank people who have discovered security flaws in its products.

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