12-Year-Old Hunts Firefox Flaw, Gets $3,000

When most of us were 12, we'd be doing small manual labor jobs for some spare cash. Maybe it was mowing the lawn or shovelling snow, but seventh-grader Alex Miller isn't your typical 12-year-old.

He's just taken a check from Mozilla for $3,000 after collecting one of the bug bounties. Miller found a security flaw in Firefox that Mozilla deemed valuable enough to reward with a $3,000 bounty – a sum that's up from the previous amount of $500. (Mozilla said that it has increased the bounty amount to reflect the change in the economy… but I'm still waiting for my salary to go up six-fold.)

Alex found the bug and sent in a report to Mozilla, but that wasn't enough to qualify for the money. He had to dig deeper. So, he spent 90 minutes a day for 10 days until he found the bug in the memory.

The 12-year-old said that he was "really, really, really, really, really happy," when the check came in.

His first use of his money? It was a donation of $100 to his neighbor's nonprofit organization of Unconditional Love Animal Rescue.

Source: Mercury News

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • whysobluepandabear
    We need more kids like this in America.
    So this kid solves a Mozilla bug for 3 g's AND donates to charities?

    Well don't I just feel like a waste of a life..
  • Assmar
    Wow, what a kid. He's like so money and he knows it. He's like a bear, and he has these claws and he knows how to kill the little bunny rabbit... or bugs.
  • dogman_1234
    All I want to do is build computers? He is one of many to fix the worlds problems. First, the Mozilla browsers, then the World!
  • dogman_1234
    FATAL STR1K3So this kid solves a Mozilla bug for 3 g's AND donates to charities?Well don't I just feel like a waste of a life..

    Aw, don't feel bad. Your time will come as well.
  • With a little effort and curiosity; any kid can make something big for family/society.
  • scrumworks
    Could he also debug my software? I can spare one dollar for each fixed bug.
  • alyoshka
    That's really a cool kid.... and of course a cooler browser.... :)
  • The_Trutherizer
    Just goes to show again. Determination is what it is all about! Well done kid.
    This kid's hair looks like the nerd version of Justin Bieber.