16-year-old Kayla is a hacker who reportedly helped Anonymous bring the ridiculously overconfident HBGary to its knees.
To maintain her online anonymity, she routinely wipes her web accounts, deletes every e-mail in her inbox, keeps no physical hard drive, uses a VM and boots off a microSD card.
“I could hide this card anywhere or chew into a million pieces in a few seconds,” Kayla told Forbes via e-mail.
So, how did Kayla become a hacker?
Well, she began reading programming books about Linux, and was already proficient in C and x86 Assembly by the age of 14.
“My dad encouraged it at first… He thought it was awesome I was so in to what he did.”
Kayla then taught herself a variety of scripting languages such as Perl, Python and PHP, along with the delicate art of SQL injection.
In December 2008, Kayla managed to exploit an SQL injection bug on 4chan’s /b/ channel.
Nowadays, Kayla frequents Anonymous channels on IRC.
“[But] I never really cared for politics and such until I started hanging round the Payback IRC,” she explained.
“I started to see the world for the corrupt mess it really is. A world where politicians and corporations could bend the rules and laws to suit their own needs.”