Security Experts:

Bug Bounty Program Launched for Facebook's Libra Cryptocurrency

The Libra Association, the organization in charge of Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency, has launched a public bug bounty program with rewards of up to $10,000.

The blockchain-powered digital currency Libra and its wallet, Calibra, are expected to become available in 2020. However, the Libra Association wants the blockchain design and implementation, along with other applications and software related to Libra, to be reviewed by as many experts as possible before its launch.

That is why the organization has decided to launch a public bug bounty program via HackerOne. It previously invited 50 security researchers specializing in blockchain to analyze the platform as part of a beta program.

The organization is particularly interested in issues that could lead to forks, transaction and block tampering, validator compromise, denial-of-service (DoS), and double spending.

Participants can earn up to $10,000 if they find critical crypto implementation flaws that can be exploited to bypass signature validation, or virtual machine flaws that allow altering the execution of Move smart contracts. Move is a new programming language for the Libra blockchain.

Hackers can earn up to $5,000 for a high-severity code or protocol bug that leads to an irrecoverable crash or in significant performance degradation.

“Now that the program is open to the public, we hope to further accelerate and expand this feedback loop,” said Michael Engle, Head of Developer Ecosystem at the Libra Association. “Our rewards program is designed to encourage members of the security community to dig deep, helping us find even the most subtle bugs. We want to help our researchers uncover issues while the Libra Blockchain is still in testnet and no real money is in circulation.”

Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, the Libra Association’s members include Facebook subsidiary Calibra, which is responsible for developing the digital wallet for Libra, Mastercard, Visa, PayPal, eBay, Uber and many other companies in the financial, tech, telecoms, blockchain, venture capital, non-profit and academic sectors.

The organization claims that one of the priorities of the Libra blockchain is security. However, privacy regulators from Australia, the US, the UK, Canada and the EU have recently demanded guarantees from Facebook on how it will protect users' financial data.

Related: Privacy Watchdogs Warn Facebook Over Libra Currency

Related: Facebook's Currency Libra Faces Financial, Privacy Pushback

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Eduard Kovacs (@EduardKovacs) is a contributing editor at SecurityWeek. He worked as a high school IT teacher for two years before starting a career in journalism as Softpedia’s security news reporter. Eduard holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial informatics and a master’s degree in computer techniques applied in electrical engineering.