Date
18 November 2019
Apple will offer more cash rewards to researchers who detect security flaws in its products. Photo: Bloomberg
Apple will offer more cash rewards to researchers who detect security flaws in its products. Photo: Bloomberg

Apple offers record ‘bounty’ to find iPhone security flaws

Apple is offering cyber security researchers up to US$1 million to detect flaws in iPhones, the largest reward offered by a company to defend against hackers, Reuters reports.

At the annual Black Hat security conference in Las Vegas on Thursday, the company said it would open the process to all researchers, add Mac software and other targets, and offer a range of rewards, called “bounties,” for the most significant findings, the report said.

Unlike other technology providers, Apple previously offered rewards only to invited researchers who tried to find flaws in its phones and cloud backups.

The US$1 million prize would apply only to remote access to the iPhone kernel without any action from the phone’s user.

Apple’s previous highest bounty was US$200,000 for friendly reports of bugs that can then be fixed with software updates and not leave them exposed to criminals or spies.

Apple is taking other steps to make research easier, including offering a modified phone that has some security measures disabled. A principal component of breaches is programs that take advantage of otherwise unknown flaws in the phones, their software or installed applications.

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