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Tor Offers $4,000 Per Flaw in Public Bug Bounty Program

Tor launches bug bounty program

The Tor Project announced on Thursday the launch of a public bug bounty program. Researchers can earn thousands of dollars if they find serious vulnerabilities in the anonymity network.

The Tor Project first announced its intention to launch a bug bounty program in late December 2015. A private program was launched in January 2016 and bounty hunters managed to find three denial-of-service (DoS) flaws, including two out-of-bounds (OOB) read and one infinite loop issues, and four memory corruption vulnerabilities that have been described as “edge-case.”

Now, with support from the Open Technology Fund, Tor has launched a public bug bounty program on the HackerOne platform.

The organization is looking for vulnerabilities in the Tor network daemon and Tor Browser, including local privilege escalation, remote code execution, unauthorized access of user data, and attack methods that can be used to obtain crypto data on relays or clients.

Researchers can earn between $2,000 and $4,000 for high severity bugs. Medium severity vulnerabilities are worth between $500 and $2,000, while low severity issues will be rewarded with a minimum of $100. Even less severe problems will be rewarded with a t-shirt, stickers and a mention in Tor’s hall of fame. On its bug bounty page, the Tor Project provides examples for each category of vulnerabilities, including with CVE references.

Vulnerabilities affecting third-party libraries used by Tor can also earn between $500 and $2,000, but libraries covered by other bug bounty programs, such as OpenSSL, have been excluded.

“Tor users around the globe, including human rights defenders, activists, lawyers, and researchers, rely on the safety and security of our software to be anonymous online. Help us protect them and keep them safe from surveillance, tracking, and attacks,” said Georg Koppen, a longtime Tor browser developer.

Tor first announced its intention to launch a bug bounty program after a team of researchers from Carnegie Mellon University helped the FBI unmask users of the anonymity network by creating more than a hundred new relays on the network. The Tor Project claimed at the time that the U.S. government had paid the university at least $1 million to carry out the attack.

Related: Tor Project Raises $200,000 in Crowdfunding Campaign

Related: Tor Browser Patches Start Being Uplifted into Firefox

Related: Tor Browser Gets Multiple Security Enhancements

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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.