DefCon, the world’s best known annual convention for hackers, reached out to a broader audience for the Las Vegas expo of all things computer security.

“I see it in him — he feels like he belongs to a clan, to a group. I’m really proud,” Rey Ayers said of his son whom he brought to DefCon in an interview with the Associated Press. “I can see he has the excitement in his eyes.”

A track for young hacker wannabes ages 8-16 drew some 60 attendees.

“Over two days, they met prominent hackers, Homeland Security officials and NSA security experts,” The Associated Press reported. “They also listened to talks on the history of hacking and lectures on cryptography. Some of the convention’s hotly contested competitions were geared toward children, as well. One contest covered lock-picking techniques to be used in the event they forget their locker combination. The kids were encouraged to find security vulnerabilities in popular technologies, from video games to computer hardware.”

By the way, The AP reported that children were required to have an adult with them.

Read The Associated Press story here.

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