Facebook Gives $10,000 to 10-Year Old Who Discovers Security Flaw

(Photo of Mark Zuckerberg by Robert Scoble)

Can you find a security flaw in one of Facebook's social media platforms? If so, the company will give you at $10,000 reward.

The youngest person to ever claim that prize is a 10-year old boy in Finland named Jani. He found a hole in Instagram, which is owned by Facebook. The company handed over the cash reward to Jani's parents. The Washington Post reports:

This reward puts Jani in the upper tier of hackers Facebook has paid for finding bugs. Since the company launched its bounty program in 2011, Facebook says it has paid out about $4.3 million to more than 800 researchers.

Melanie Ensign, a security representative at Facebook, told The Washington Post by phone early Wednesday that most of those payouts are much smaller amounts. The reported $1,780 average reward skews high,  she said, with a cluster of very large payouts obscuring the typical sum.

“We base our bounties on the scope of the risk, rather than the novelty or sophistication,” Ensign said. The flaw that Jani found “would have impacted everybody on Instagram.”

Jani hopes to spend some of that reward money on a bike, soccer equipment, and new computers.

-via Marilyn Terrell


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