Apple Launches Bug Bounty Program, Offers Up to $200,000 for Software Vulnerabilities Discovered

At today's Black Hat Conference, an annual event designed for the global InfoSec community, Apple's head of security engineering Ivan Krstic announced the launch of a bug bounty program that will see Apple paying money to individuals who discover major bugs and security flaws in the company's software.

Many major technology companies like Google and Microsoft offer bug bounty programs to encourage people to discover and report major vulnerabilities, but until now, Apple has declined to provide a similar program.

applebugbounty


According to TechCrunch, Apple's new bug bounty program is part of Apple's effort to open up to hackers, researchers, and cryptographers who want to help improve the company's security.

Apple will be offering bounties of up to $200,000 to researchers depending on the vulnerability that's discovered. Secure boot firmware components will earn $200,000 at the high end, while smaller vulnerabilities, like access from a sandboxed process to user data outside of the sandbox, will earn $25,000.

Although each category of vulnerability maxes out at the given rate, Apple will determine the exact reward amount based on several factors: the clarity of the vulnerability report; the novelty of the problem and the likelihood of user exposure; and the degree of user interaction necessary to exploit the vulnerability.

Apple plans to launch its new bug bounty program in September. To be eligible for a reward as part of the program, researchers will need to provide proof-of-concept on the latest versions of iOS and the company's newest hardware. Apple will also encourage researchers to donate their earnings to charity and will match all bug bounty donations.

The program will be invite only for the time being, limited to a few dozen researchers. Apple plans to make it more open as it grows, and if a non-member discovers a significant bug, they'll be invited to the program.

Top Rated Comments

now i see it Avatar
85 months ago
I discovered a bug in Apple's Mac update schedule. The Mac never seems to update. Can I collect $200,000?
Score: 27 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheHorrorNerd Avatar
85 months ago
I discovered a bug in Apple's Mac update schedule. The Mac never seems to update. Can I collect $200,000?
And that's why its invite only...
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
44267547 Avatar
85 months ago
$200,000 is a great incentive to help detect these issues. Hopefully it's successful.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheHorrorNerd Avatar
85 months ago
Can no longer do it in-house - going the OUTSOURCING route.
Oh come on... Most other companies "outsource" it... Its smart business.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Twimfy Avatar
85 months ago
The incredibly buggy new OS releases shows that Apple is no longer capable of doing it in-house - going the OUTSOURCING route.
Not quite, doesn't matter how many gifted employees you have in-house you'll never catch everything. A familiar work environment breeds a familiar way of thinking, sometimes you need someone to take a look at code from a completely different perspective and it's amazing what can be spotted hiding in plain sight. Happens in all walks of life.

Increasing the number of eyes on their systems with a financial incentive is a really efficient and effective way of catching security flaws.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ramsey aguilera Avatar
85 months ago
RIP to the juicy jailbreak community
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone trade in

Apple Adjusts Trade-In Values for iPhones, Macs, and More

Wednesday January 25, 2023 9:40 am PST by
After announcing new Mac and HomePod models last week, Apple adjusted its trade-in values for select devices in the United States. iPhone trade-in values decreased by up to $80, and most Android smartphones also went down. Mac trade-in values remained unchanged or increased by up to $40 depending on the model, while some Apple Watch models increased in value and others decreased. Trade-in...
iphone 15 pro wifi 6e

Internal Apple Document From Leaker 'Unknownz21' Confirms Wi-Fi 6E Will Be Limited to iPhone 15 Pro Models

Friday January 27, 2023 10:01 am PST by
Multiple rumors have suggested that the next-generation iPhone 15 models will adopt the Wi-Fi 6E standard that Apple has already introduced in the iPad Pro and MacBook Pro, and now a leaked document appears to confirm Apple's plans. Sourced from researcher and Apple leaker Unknownz21 (@URedditor), the document features diagrams of the iPhone 15's antenna architecture. D8x refers to the...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Side Perspective Feature Purple

iPhone 15 Expected to Feature Wi-Fi 6E Like Latest Macs and iPad Pro

Wednesday January 25, 2023 5:39 pm PST by
The iPhone 15 will support Wi-Fi 6E, according to a research note shared this week by Barclays analysts Blayne Curtis and Tom O'Malley. The analysts did not specify whether the feature will be available on all models or limited to the Pro models. Apple has added Wi-Fi 6E support to a handful of devices so far, including the latest 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro, 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook...
maxresdefault

Hands-On With the New M2 Max MacBook Pro

Thursday January 26, 2023 12:14 pm PST by
New 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models with the latest M2 Pro and M2 Max chips are available in Apple retail stores and are already in the hands of customers, and we picked up one of the new M2 Max machines to answer all of the questions MacRumors readers considering a purchase might have. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Yesterday, we asked MacRumors fans on...
Mac Pro 2019 Apple

Mac Pro Enthusiasts Raise Concerns Over Upgrade Limitations of Apple Silicon

Thursday January 26, 2023 6:30 am PST by
The new Mac Pro coming later this year is expected to feature the same spacious modular design as the 2019 model, but with fresh concerns over its lack of upgradeability surfacing, some users are beginning to wonder what the transition away from Intel architecture actually means for Apple's most powerful Mac. The current Intel Mac Pro that Apple sells is popular with creative professionals...
iOS 16

iOS 16.3 for iPhone Launching Next Week With These 4 New Features

Friday January 20, 2023 11:43 am PST by
In a recent press release, Apple confirmed that iOS 16.3 will be released to the public next week. The software update will be available for the iPhone 8 and newer and includes a handful of new features, changes, and bug fixes. Below, we've recapped bigger features in iOS 16.3, including support for physical security keys as a two-factor authentication option for Apple ID accounts, worldwide ...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Side Perspective Feature Purple

iPhone 15 Pro Rumored to Have These 8 Features

Friday January 27, 2023 2:11 pm PST by
Apple's next-generation iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max are expected to be announced in September as usual. Already, rumors suggest the devices will have at least eight exclusive features not available on the standard iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus. An overview of the eight features rumored to be exclusive to iPhone 15 Pro models:A17 chip: iPhone 15 Pro models will be equipped with an A17...