“We need Time to Investigate and Understand the Issue before we can Determine whether it does Qualify for the Bug Bounty. Our Priority in these cases is to Investigate the Issues and Work with the Security Team to develop Fixes First” - Mike Schroepfer
Imagine a situation where someone guarantees your safety and security. Wouldn’t it make you happy? It definitely will.
Bug Bounty Hunters guarantee the same kind of happiness to organizations and other business enterprises, looking to safeguard their IoT (Internet of Things) devices, their computer systems as well as their overall cyber presence.
So what is a Bug Bounty Program? What implications does the Bug Bounty Meaning have in store for the digitalized world? Let us answer these questions.
In this blog, we shall try to find out what is Bug Bounty. Besides investigating the Bug Bounty Meaning, we shall look at the question of what is Bug Bounty Hunting, what is a Bug Bounty Hunter, what is Recon in Bug Bounty as well as try and find out how to become a Bug Bounty Hunter.
What is Bug Bounty?
In this section, we shall try to understand what is a Bug Bounty Program.
A bug bounty is a monetary compensation/reward, awarded to bug bounty hunters/ethical hackers/penetration testers for detecting security weaknesses, vulnerability as well as bugs and reporting the same to the organization concerned.
Bugs are generally in the form of security vulnerabilities and exploits; while they can also take the form of hardware flaws, process issues and so on.
When bug bounty hunters are able to identify plausible security gaps by reporting valid bugs; the organization rewards them in the form of a fixed monetary compensation.
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As you seek to understand what is Bug Bounty, you should remember that the nature of the Bug Bounty program differs from organization to organization.
While coming out with their applications for inviting bounty hunters, some organizations might declare ‘Open Season’ which implies that the ethical hacker can test for any potential vulnerability which pertains to the organization.
On the other hand, some of them, happen to specify the web pages and applications which are permissible to be tested by the bug bounty hunters. Similarly, companies might specifically issue invites to specific bug hunters or else the program might be declared public wherein anyone can sign up and join.
What is Bug Bounty Hunting: What is a Bug Bounty Hunter
Bug Bounty Hunters are essentially highly skilled security researchers, also known as ethical hackers. Their job is to find software vulnerabilities and report software vulnerabilities to organizations that either run their own bug bounty program or participate in larger, talent bug bounty programs.
Bug Bounty Meaning: Its Operation
In this section, we shall try to find out what is Bug Bounty Hunting in terms of the way in which it works.
Organizations which seek to introduce Bug Bounty Programs, are required to specify their budget and scope for the program.
The scope of the program is important as it lays down in detail the way in which the tests have to be conducted as well as, specifies the systems which can be tested by the hacker.
This is particularly important because it is important for organizations to ensure that the act of Bug Bounty Hunting does not hamper the day to day functioning of the organization.
Bounty programs entail rewards levels which is determined on the basis of severity of the bug or vulnerability detected.
Consequently, the reward also increases as the perceived impact of the bug increases. When the hunter is able to detect a bug, he is required to fill in a disclosure report which provides details of the nature of the bug, its potential impact as well as severity level. They also include information which could help developers to replicate and validate the bug.
The reports are essentially fetched through an independent third party program like HackerOne or Bugcrowd. When the bug is confirmed by the developer, the bounty is rewarded to the hunter.