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Moroccan Cyber Prodigy Outsmarts Security Experts to Win Top Prize at President's Cup

Wednesday 28 February 2024 - 15:13
Moroccan Cyber Prodigy Outsmarts Security Experts to Win Top Prize at President's Cup

Rayan Ait Taher, a remarkably talented 12-year-old from Morocco, has showcased cybersecurity skills far beyond his years by clinching first place at the prestigious President's Cup Cybersecurity Competition. Hosted biennially by the US Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), this competition pits the world's foremost security analysts against a series of rigorous hacking challenges designed to assess their expertise.

In this year's event, held remotely, over 3,000 competitors from dozens of nations put their technical acumen to the test. However, none could match the remarkable score of 3,245 points achieved by the young Moroccan prodigy. Rayan Ait Taher's performance left seasoned professionals from Israel, the US, and other countries scrambling to keep pace. Through a combination of stealth and ingenuity, he navigated the prepared computer systems with remarkable skill, outmaneuvering rivals many times his senior.

CISA officials expressed their astonishment at Rayan Ait Taher's triumph in a congratulatory letter, as reported by Moroccan state media. They admired his exceptional talents, acknowledging that despite being too young to claim the $72,000 grand prize, Ait Taher's skills were undeniable. Notably, he had previously hacked major websites, including altering the logo on soccer star Neymar's page without detection.

At just 12 years old, Rayan Ait Taher's mastery of cyber offense and defense surpasses expectations. Through bold virtual exploits, he has distinguished himself on hacking's grandest stages, establishing himself as a cyber champion even before reaching his teens. With his astute abilities and steady hands, this Moroccan wunderkind may one day play a pivotal role in securing the future of the online world. For now, he remains committed to hacking for enjoyment and personal challenges, readily taking on seasoned security experts twice his age.

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