Vulnerabilities / Threats

1/25/2012
01:45 PM
50%
50%

Pwn2Own Hacking Contest Gets Facelift

Popular competition will up the ante with longer contest, fewer targets, more payout for first-, second-, third-place winners--plus an extra Google bounty for cracking Chrome.

The high-profile, high-stakes Pwn2Own annual hacking competition will look more like a long-distance race than a sprint this year: Sponsor HP/TippingPoint DVLabs has revamped the prestigious contest by raising the bar and upping the potential purse.

There are just four targets in this year's contest, and they are all browsers: Microsoft Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Apple Safari. Unlike years past, it won't be a race to zero-day, but instead a points-based system with a few specific challenges along the way, and first-, second-, and third-place prizes totaling $105,000 for the three winning contestants or teams.

Google also is offering a side bounty of two prizes for full and partial hacks of Chrome, according to Aaron Portnoy, director of ZDI. Full hack means using bugs in Chrome to conduct "un-sandboxed" code execution. "You would get $20,000 for [each] unique way of doing that," Portnoy says. Using a bug in Chrome as well as the underlying operating system brings in $10,000 per set of bugs, he said.

And that's basically icing: "If you pop Chrome in the contest, you get a point-value association with Chrome from us as well," he says.

Perhaps the biggest change to the March 7 to 9 contest at the ConSecWest conference will be its length and breadth: No longer will it be literally "game over" when a contestant finds a zero-day bug in the targeted software. Winners will be based on a point system, and there will be no more mobile-device hacking this year.

"We were trying to get away from the headlines, [such as] 'Mac Hacked In Three Seconds,'" says Aaron Portnoy, director of ZDI. "Unlike in prior years, if someone finds a zero-day, the target is not removed from the contest anymore and you can go after anything you want ... and continually attack anything."

And ZDI will throw in another new element for the contestants to crack: patched vulnerabilities in which the researchers at ZDI have discovered holes. "On the first day of the contest, we will announce two patched vulnerabilities per target that my team has confirmed are exploitable. We will give out a virtual machine with the targeted browser, and the proof-of-concept that triggers it, but not the exploit," he said.

Read the rest of this article on Dark Reading.

The right forensic tools in the right hands are just a start. The new Digital Detectives issue of Dark Reading shows you how to better apply the lessons they teach. (Free registration required.)

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
Dark Reading Live EVENTS
INsecurity - For the Defenders of Enterprise Security
A Dark Reading Conference
While red team conferences focus primarily on new vulnerabilities and security researchers, INsecurity puts security execution, protection, and operations center stage. The primary speakers will be CISOs and leaders in security defense; the blue team will be the focus.
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: No, no, no! Have a Unix CRON do the pop-up reminders!
Current Issue
Security Vulnerabilities: The Next Wave
Just when you thought it was safe, researchers have unveiled a new round of IT security flaws. Is your enterprise ready?
Flash Poll
[Strategic Security Report] How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Problem
[Strategic Security Report] How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Problem
Enterprises are spending more of their IT budgets on cybersecurity technology. How do your organization's security plans and strategies compare to what others are doing? Here's an in-depth look.
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2017-0290
Published: 2017-05-09
NScript in mpengine in Microsoft Malware Protection Engine with Engine Version before 1.1.13704.0, as used in Windows Defender and other products, allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial of service (type confusion and application crash) via crafted JavaScript code within ...

CVE-2016-10369
Published: 2017-05-08
unixsocket.c in lxterminal through 0.3.0 insecurely uses /tmp for a socket file, allowing a local user to cause a denial of service (preventing terminal launch), or possibly have other impact (bypassing terminal access control).

CVE-2016-8202
Published: 2017-05-08
A privilege escalation vulnerability in Brocade Fibre Channel SAN products running Brocade Fabric OS (FOS) releases earlier than v7.4.1d and v8.0.1b could allow an authenticated attacker to elevate the privileges of user accounts accessing the system via command line interface. With affected version...

CVE-2016-8209
Published: 2017-05-08
Improper checks for unusual or exceptional conditions in Brocade NetIron 05.8.00 and later releases up to and including 06.1.00, when the Management Module is continuously scanned on port 22, may allow attackers to cause a denial of service (crash and reload) of the management module.

CVE-2017-0890
Published: 2017-05-08
Nextcloud Server before 11.0.3 is vulnerable to an inadequate escaping leading to a XSS vulnerability in the search module. To be exploitable a user has to write or paste malicious content into the search dialogue.