Microsoft doubles bug bounty reward, white hats can now earn $100,000

microsoft doubles bug bounty reward white hats can now earn 100000  chromawise
A couple of days on from the official release of Windows 10, Microsoft has raised the rewards for some of its bug bounty programs, which it hopes will help keep its systems more secure.

Most notably Microsoft has doubled the maximum fees for the Bounty for Defense from $50,000 to $100,000. It has also extended its Online Services Bug Bounty to include authentication vulnerabilities, where discoveries are now eligible for a double payment.

Microsoft said the changes came in response to feedback from the security research community. The company made the announcement at last week’s Black Hat cybersecurity conference in Las Vegas, which it called “part of the rigorous security programs at Microsoft.”

Many tech and software companies run bug bounty programs to entice ethical hackers to disclose any bugs or vulnerabilities in their software to the company in exchange for a cash reward, rather than go public with the information.

Oftentimes hackers have to meet strict criteria in order to claim their prize, like agreeing to not disclose any information about the bug before telling the company or rigorously proving the dangers of their findings if they want to get paid.

Microsoft has been steadily expanding its bug bounties over the years. In April of this year, it introduced programs covering Microsoft Azure and a bounty for the preview of Microsoft Edge ahead of its release.

Bug bounty rewards can vary wildly from company to company. Yahoo for example has smaller rewards going for around $100, while their maximum rewards can hit $20,000. United Airlines offers flight miles to researchers. Mozilla meanwhile pays up to $10,000 for “novel” vulnerabilities and exploits depending on how rare or dangerous the bug is.

Home Theater

Phiaton’s active lifestyle headphones do noise canceling on a budget

Looking for a set of active noise-canceling earbuds that can keep up with your active lifestyle, without breaking the bank? Phiaton's new Curve BT 120 NC could be just the ticket.

LG’s most affordable OLED TVs now come with $170 to $260 in gift cards

Trusted electronics retailer ABT is offering LG's most affordable OLED TV, the B8 series with $170 and $260 gift cards for the 55- and 65-inch models, respectively. While the OLED TVs don't often go on sale gift cards like this are…

You don't want to sleep on these red-hot bedding deals

We've rounded up some of the best discounts and sales happening right now, so you can buy yourself (or your loved ones) new bedding without breaking your budget. Trust us when we say these are deals worth losing sleep over.

The best smartphone stocking stuffers for a very techy Christmas

If you've got a tech-loving smartphone enthusiast to buy for, we can help you out. Here's a selection of top phone accessories that would make amazing stocking stuffers so you can have a very Merry Christmas.

Report: Teens now spend more hours consuming media than sleeping

According to a new report from non-profit group Common Sense Media, teenagers now spend a whopping nine hours a day using media (and are averaging just seven hours of sleep). Out of these nine hours, nearly seven are spent in front of a…

VR will replace smartphones someday, predicts Oculus founder Palmer Luckey

Virtual reality isn't just a gimmick according to Oculus founder Palmer Luckey: he says it's eventually going to replace smartphones as we know them and that we will use VR constantly.
Emerging Tech

Introducing the emoji keyboard, for when typing out words gets too much

It's finally happened. Someone has designed, built and launched a unique Bluetooth keyboard that lets you type emoji in a flash. Splash out $100 on the Pro model and you'll have 120 emoji to choose from, surely enough to give up the written…

In an embarrassing error, Google Translate invites people to a Clitoris Festival

This small Spanish town entrusted the translation of its upcoming culinary festival promotional text to Google Translate, which resulted in it being renamed the Clitoris Festival, an embarrassing error that went unnoticed for several…

Less is actually less: 5 reasons you should spend more on your next laptop

Low-cost laptops may look tempting, but the sacrifices you make to get there will often come back to bite you in the years of ownership ahead.

The UK government is trying to legalize mass surveillance this week

The UK government is pushing through a bill to legalize mass surveillance, named the Investigatory Powers Bill. It is the bill's third draft, after failing twice to pass under the coalition government.

Data leak affects nearly half a million vBulletin users following targeted hack

vBulletin has taken another hit to its reputation this week, as it was discovered that almost half a million customer records had been copied away from its website following a hack by one individual who goes by the name ColdZer0.

What was it like to live through 9/11? VR experience 8:46 puts you there – and it’s terrifying

A virtual reality experience that depicts the moments leading up to and following the plane strikes on the World Trade Center on 9/11 is drawing the ire of many.
Home Theater

Circle with Disney lets you rule your household Internet with an iron fist

Circle with Disney is a device that connects to an Internet router, giving parents control over the kind of content their kids can access, and when it can be accessed.

Nvidia releases ‘game ready’ drivers for Call of Duty: Black Ops III

Video game enthusiasts are eager to start playing the likes of Fallout 4 and Star Wars Battlefront as soon as possible -- and Nvidia has a schedule of driver updates to make sure things run smoothly.