MONTREAL - A student who figured out a way to hike marks for himself and his friends has been unmasked at Beurling Academy in Verdun.

The young man entered his teacher's computer network and helped himself to some higher numbers. If you were his friend, he might have raised your mark and if you were his not his friend, your marks went down.

"He raised a few and he lowered a few," says Suanne Stein Day of the Lester B. Pearson School Board. "It was just a childish prank."

His ruse, however, was snuffed out before anything could be made official. His ever-alert teacher noticed that the numbers had changed and she figured out the scam.

The story was soon the talk on Facebook, making the teenage hacker a bit of a newsmaker on the social network.

CTV Montreal contacted the student through email. He asked that his age or grade not be revealed publicly but confessed that his feat involved hacking through several passwords to get at the report-card files. In his words, the protection was "at best very weak."

A determined kid with an internet connection can be a dangerous thing, as the world has learned.

"This is a battleground," says hacking expert Terry Cutler.

"It's us versus 20,000 students. So this is where we learn the techniques of how these guys are trying to break into the system."

Stein Day admits that there was cleverness involved, but not quite enough.

"Our students are smart. Our department is a little smarter and we have excellent security."

The teenager was expelled from Beurling Academy as a result of the incident.