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6-year-old hacks mom’s iPhone, buys $250 in Pokémon gear from Amazon

Touch ID is no match for this 6-year-old.


Phillip Tracy


When Santa’s arrival seems too far away, you’ve got to take things into your own hands. 

That’s exactly what a 6-year-old secret agent did earlier this month: Ashlynd Howell bypassed one of today’s most robust methods for securing consumer electronics to buy $250 worth of Pokémon items.

The young girl from Arkansas showed off her Ethan Hunt-like skills when she placed an Amazon order through her parent’s account without anyone knowing. How could this have happened? The sly girl carefully placed her sleeping mom’s finger on her Touch ID-enabled iPhone, and voila—the floodgates had opened.

Ashlynd’s mom Bethanny woke up to 13 Amazon order confirmations. She initially thought she had been hacked, only to find out it was her evil-genius daughter.

“No, Mommy, I was shopping,” Ashlynd told her mom according to the Wall Street Journal. “But don’t worry—everything that I ordered is coming straight to the house.”

Of course, it is, Ashlynd.

Unfortunately, Bethanny was only able to return four of the 13 orders, which should make picking out presents for her daughter much easier this year (and probably for the next several years). This isn’t the first time something like this has happened. In fact, Amazon got in some trouble with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for banking off in-app purchases made by children.

The FTC said that Amazon collected millions of dollars over two-and-a-half years from allegedly illegal transactions, according to a lawsuit filed in federal district court on Thursday. 

This newest victim will certainly hope iris recognition or retina scanning become commonplace, sure solutions to securing a device while catching some Zs.

H/T Wall Street Journal

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