Apple has promised a reward of $1 million for anyone who can successfully hack into an iPhone or a Mac device.
This was disclosed by Apple’s Head of Security Engineering, Ivan Kristic while giving a talk on iOS and macOS security at the Black Hat Conference in Las Vegas.
The breakdown: According to Kristic, the full $1 million will go to researchers who can hack the core of the iOS without requiring any action from the iPhone owner.
In addition, $500,000 will be given to those who can find a “network attack requiring no user interaction.” Lastly, Kristic announced that a 50% bonus would also be provided for hackers who can find weaknesses in software before it’s released.
The bug bounty offers began in 2016 with rewards ranging up to $200,000 for hackers or researchers who found vulnerabilities in iOS devices that would allow an attacker to gain full control of the device, without any user interaction.
Apple is said to test-run this by giving security researches jail-broken iPhones, to make it easier for them to search for vulnerabilities.
Why the increase? The bounty was increased as a result of the fact that hackers presently have a booming private market where they sell such information to governments for huge sums of money. Hence, this is a way for Apple to catch in on the demands of the market.
Meanwhile, a group of hackers recently discovered some flaws in Apple’s software, which would allow hackers to gain access to iPhones simply by sending a message. Luckily, the details were shared with Apple. The company solved it before hackers got the chance to take advantage of them.
This new move by Apple is applaudable and can be considered a strategy for preventing Apple devices from being used for crime and other unacceptable reasons.