Microsoft has launched a new bounty program aimed at encouraging Windows users to find bugs in its products. The Windows Bounty Program means you could receive payouts of up to $250,000 for being the first person to find and report bugs in Windows 10 and/or other qualifying products.
No company is perfect. And no company is capable of shipping a product that’s 100 percent guaranteed to be free from bugs. Which is why bounty programs exist. In a nutshell, they tempt security researchers into hunting for bugs in the hopes of bagging a reward. And the new Windows Bounty Program is no exception.
Microsoft Goes Hunting for Bugs
The latest Windows Bounty Program is now live, with Microsoft doubling down on its efforts to protect its users. This bounty program is focused on bugs in Hyper-V in Windows 10 or Windows Server, as well as Microsoft Edge and Windows Defender Application Guard. All of which are based on the Windows 10 Insider builds.
In the TechNet blog post announcing the new Windows Bounty Program Microsoft states:
“In the spirit of maintaining a high security bar in Windows, we’re launching the Windows Bounty Program on July 26, 2017. This will include all features of the Windows Insider Preview in addition to focus areas in Hyper-V, Mitigation bypass, Windows Defender Application Guard, and Microsoft Edge. We’re also bumping up the pay-out range for the Hyper-V Bounty Program.”
Microsoft has previously paid out up to $100,000 for individual bugs in Windows 8.1. However, the company is now bumping the maximum payout to $250,000. However, it should be noted that this is reserved for the most critical bugs, with the payouts for less serious bugs starting at $500.
Do You Have the Skills to Pay the Bills?
To be honest the Windows Bounty Program isn’t intended for the likes of you and me (especially me). Instead, like so many other big-name bounty programs, it’s designed for professional security researchers who will literally go hunting for exploits. Which can be a lucrative career choice for those who have the skills to pay the bills. So perhaps you have a future as a white-hat hacker.
Do you use Microsoft products on a daily basis? Have you ever encountered a bug in one of these products? Did you notify Microsoft about the issue? Do you think you have the skills to earn money hunting for bugs through bounty programs? The comments are open below…