US Department of Homeland Security offers hackers a bounty to find bugs

Once a novelty, hundreds of organisations around the world now have bug bounty programmes, according to a list maintained by Bugcrowd, a San Francisco-based company that helps manage them. — AFP Relaxnews

The US Department of Homeland Security announced a new programme on Dec 14 in which the agency will pay outside hackers to find vulnerabilities in its computer systems, a type of incentive popular in the cybersecurity industry that is known as a “bug bounty”.

DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas unveiled his agency’s “Hack DHS” programme at the Bloomberg Technology Summit. Unlike many bug bounties, which are open to anyone, DHS said in a statement that its programme would include only “vetted cybersecurity researchers who have been invited to access select external DHS systems”. Any vulnerabilities they find would then be fixed, and the researchers would be rewarded with financial prizes.

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