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Facebook Pays $120,000 in Bounties at BountyCon

Facebook and Google have wrapped up the first edition of their BountyCon Asia-Pacific bug hunting conference, which resulted in $120,000 awarded in bounties.

Facebook and Google have wrapped up the first edition of their BountyCon Asia-Pacific bug hunting conference, which resulted in $120,000 awarded in bounties.

Hosted in Singapore, the two-day conference included a series of presentations on bug hunting and a live hacking event, and also sought to honor the top scorers in a Capture The Flag (CTF) competition that ran for six weeks over January and February this year.

“Our goal for the two-day conference was to get to know researchers from across the Asia-Pacific region better, share best practices for finding and reporting high-quality vulnerabilities and give researchers the opportunity to put those lessons into practice during a live hacking event on our respective platforms,” Facebook notes.

Researchers attending the conference came from Singapore and from across Asia, including Japan, Malaysia, Nepal, India, Indonesia and the Philippines.

During the first day of the conference, which took place at Facebook’s Singapore office, presentations were held on bug hunting tips. The event included a keynote from bug hunter Frans Rosen, observations from security engineers and researchers at Google and Facebook on top bugs, and presentations from top CTF scorers on their experience.

These top scorers included HoMing Tay of Vancouver, Canada; Rahul Kankrale from India; Sachin Thakuri of Kathmandu, Nepal; and Kishan Bagaria from India. They offered tips, as well as details on the approaches they used for finding security vulnerabilities.

Held on the second day, the live hacking event saw researchers and university students collaborate and submit bugs across both platforms. Facebook paid more than $120,000 in bounties for 40 valid reports submitted during the event.

Dzmitry Lukyanenka from Belarus and Shubham (Shubs) Shah from Australia were among the researchers to submit the most bugs.

As part of the BountyCon CTF competition that ran earlier this year, participants had to find hidden flags across Facebook and Google. The platforms awarded top scorers with free travel and accommodations to attend the conference.

The competition was mainly intended for researchers in the Asia-Pacific region, but the two companies reserved a few spots for worldwide researchers interested in participating. University students and top researchers from across the region were also invited to attend.

The BountyCon wrap-up arrives only days before SecurityWeek’s Singapore 2019 ICS Cyber Security Conference, set to take place between April 16 and 18. The event is dedicated to serving critical infrastructure and industrial Internet stakeholders in the APAC region.

Related: EU to Run Bug Bounty Programs for 14 Free Software Projects

Related: Singapore Government Announces Second Bug Bounty Program

Written By

Ionut Arghire is an international correspondent for SecurityWeek.

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