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Kid hacks school comp on teacher's dare

And guess who's been punished

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Fifteen-year-old Washington State high school student Aaron Lutes defeated filtering/security software on a school computer system after his teacher dared the class to try it.

Elma High School computer science teacher Giovanni Colombo issued the dare in class, joking that the students might get a reward from the software maker if they cracked it, and adding that he wanted ten per cent of the eventual payout for having thought of this brilliant idea.

Young Lutes was only too happy to oblige, and did, but his ultimate 'reward' was five-day's suspension from school and a trip to the local police lockup where he was held briefly on charges of unauthorized access to government data.

The teacher was undoubtedly trying to motivate his students by issuing a novel challenge, but according to a report by the Seattle Times, he has since distanced himself by saying it was all a joke which the kids ought to have seen through, and thus leaving the fifteen-year-old boy holding the bag.

Apparently this is the Washington public school system's idea of character education. And perhaps there is wisdom in it after all: one needs to learn as early as possible the crucial business of covering his ass at all costs. ®

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