So, frankly, it shouldn’t have come as much of a shock when a
few hundred of the tech-drenched children of Los Angeles figured
out how to “hack” the $678 iPads they were given by their school
district, just one month into the new school year.
In recent weeks, Los Angeles distributed iPads to 50,000
students in the public school system as part of a pilot for a $1
billion citywide initiative. Kids at Westchester High, one of the
few schools that allowed students to take their tablets home,
quickly noted that they could bypass the district-installed
security filter with two clicks, allowing them to access banned
sites like YouTube and Facebook.
One of the student hackers—if two clicks can be called
“hacking”—was Westchester High valedictorian candidate Brian Young,
who was hauled into the principal’s office for a dressing-down. “He
wasn’t threatening me, but he told me millions of dollars of
technology had been compromised because of me,” Young told
Angeles Times. Young said he fiddled with the security
settings innocently, after having trouble getting online at home.
Apparently, the iPads are configured to work well only on the
limited in-school network. Young said he’d hoped to download some
apps that the school’s network couldn’t handle or didn’t permit. We
don’t know whether young Young was looking to download something
to help with his math homework or whether he was pursuing
… other extracurricular activities. But that didn’t stop school
administrators and local media from panicking.
I can’t decide which the mainstream media knows less about – guns, or technology.
It may be a tie. They may know nothing about either subject. A couple of clicks is a “hack?”
No, the hacks here are “reporters” who promulgate memes like these.