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Sony announces PlayStation Bug Bounty program with bounties of over $50,000

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The program stems from Sony’s desire to “deliver a safer place to play”

Sony is inviting anyone and everyone to seek out bugs on the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Network for hefty bounties.

The PlayStation Bug Bounty program was announced via the official PlayStation blog in collaboration with security platform HackerOne. The program stems from Sony’s desire to “deliver a safer place to play” to its community.

To kickstart the collaboration, Sony is calling upon the “security research community, gamers and anyone else” to test the security of the PS4 and PlayStation Network. The bug bounty program offers various cash rewards according to the severity of the issue and the quality of the report.

Payouts start at USD$100 for a low-rated vulnerability discovered on the PlayStation Network, with more valuable payouts worth $400, $1,000 and $3,000. Discovering a low-rated vulnerability on the PlayStation 4 can fetch participants $500, with higher payouts worth $2,500, $10,000 and, for the most critical vulnerabilities, $50,000 and above.

HackerOne’s website confirms that Sony will “only award a bounty to the first researcher to have reported a previously unreported, vulnerability”. Data from HackerOne’s site also points out that the program has paid out $173,900, prior to the program going public, to researchers who have reported vulnerabilities, with an average bounty of $400.

Earlier in April, Riot Games began offering bounties of up to USD$100,000 to hackers that could “demonstrate practical exploits” in Valorant‘s anti-cheating system, Vanguard. The main reason for the challenge being issued was to combat players’ security concerns.

When the closed beta of Valorant launched earlier in April, players noticed that the Vanguard system is more invasive than other anti-cheat solutions. The system ran around the clock on players’ computers, even when the game was not in use. An update has since been made to the system. It can now be shut off when the game isn’t running.

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