Hacker Q&A with LEETboy: I bought a car for my mom from bug bounties
A hacker is a superhero who uses his superpower (hacking) to make the world a better place. That’s what LEETboy, aka Mohammad Aman Khan, believes (and so do we).
Mohammad has found bugs in Snapchat, Twitter, Quora, Mapbox and others. He is currently #2 on the quarterly leaderboard and we caught up with him recently to ask him a few questions about getting started hacking, who are the hackers he looks up to, and what is the best bug bounty swag he’s ever got.
When did you start hacking?
When I was 13.
How did you get interested in hacking?
I created some random HTML pages about football tips and tricks, but I didn’t have an internet connection in my home to upload them. So I asked some of my friends about how to access the internet for free and they told me about “hacking”. I was clueless, but I was also curious to know more so I started doing research. This was my start.
Was your family supportive?
Yep! My whole family encouraged me. They are very supportive, they always cheer me up, and they appreciate what I do. I have 2 younger siblings, but they have no clue about hacking.
What keeps you hacking?
I like the challenge and the opportunity to work with different companies. I love to find CSRFs and logical flaws.
I was most proud of myself when I hacked my own Smart TV! The bug was having a huge impact and I reported it to Samsung and got $2,000 for that! Samsung also listed me in their hall of fame.
What do you do with the money you earn?
I spend it on my family. I bought a car for my mother from the bounties I earned through HackerOne.
That car is really special for me. :) I used to ride the school bus, but when I started working on bug bounties I’d look for bugs until 4 or 5 AM. That left me just 2 or 3 hours of sleep, and then at 7 AM I’d have to go to school. I’d miss the bus and my mom would drop me at school in that car.
Who do look up to in the hacking community?
What advice would you give to other young people looking to get into hacking?
First, understand the difference between a hacker and a criminal. To me a hacker is a superhero who uses their superpower (hacking) to make the internet a safer place. Be a hacker not a criminal! Don’t misuse your powers; use them to save the world!
Second, remember, “God helps those who help themselves”. Don’t expect that someone will come and teach you. You have to do it yourself! Nothing worth having comes easy so work hard and put in your 100%. There will be times when you won’t be able to find bugs, but don’t lose hope!
Do you have plans to go to university?
Yes! I will definitely go to university.
What do you do when you’re not hacking or going to school?
When I am not hacking I spend time with my family, go out for a movie with my cousins, or I just complete my sleep.
What’s the best piece of swag you’ve received?
I love the swag I got from HackerOne!