If there is one Microsoft factor most people agree on, it is the way the software titan handles the security of its products. Long gone are the days of old when reports of lethal exploits and cyberattacks regularly surfaced.
The software titan revamped its emphasis on security after Windows XP and the results are there for all to see. The overall security of the operating system was further amped up with Windows 7 and then Windows 8.
And now the company is going one up, after recently announcing a bug bounty program for Windows 8.1 Preview, along with Internet Explorer 11 — rewards of up to $100,000 are up for grabs for those that find security flaws in these two products.
Wolfgang Kandek, the CTO of Qualys said in a statement that Redmond is indeed doing the right thing by offering so much money to users to find bugs.
“I think this is an intelligent move by Microsoft to tap talent from all over the world, especially in the security space where it’s hard to find that talent. It also encourages good research to land into the hands of vendors rather than being sold on the black market.”
The security expert pointed that other companies have already launched such programs, to great success:
“Bug bounty programs are not new and have been implemented previously by Google, Mozilla, PayPal and Facebook to name a few. White market bug bounty programs like HP-Tipping Point’s Zero Day Initiative have been around for a few years now. Nevertheless, Microsoft’s move is welcome and the prize money certainly trumps other programs.”
Microsoft, of course, claims that its new security bounty program is specially aimed to help its own engineers patch flaws before the final stable versions of both upcoming products hit the market.