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Microsoft Offers New Bug Bounties for Spectre, Meltdown-Type Flaws

Microsoft is offering a short-term bug bounty program for speculative execution side-channel vulnerabilities and threats.

Microsoft last week announced new bug bounties for speculative execution side-channel vulnerabilities. These vulnerabilities, of which Spectre and Meltdown were the first known examples, represent a new class of problem and Microsoft would like to know what else might be lurking in the neighborhood.

The bug bounties - on offer through December 31, 2018 - are:

Tier 1: New categories of speculative execution attacks

Up to $250,000

Tier 2: Azure speculative execution mitigation bypass

Up to $200,000

Tier 3: Windows speculative execution mitigation bypass

Up to $200,000

 

Tier 4: Instance of a known speculative execution vulnerability (such as CVE-2017-5753) in Windows 10 or Microsoft Edge. This vulnerability must enable the disclosure of sensitive information across a trust boundary

Up to $25,000

According to Microsoft, Tier 1 vulnerabilities are new attacks, Tiers 2 and 3 are techniques that get around protections already put in place against existing vulnerabilities, and Tier 4 is a demonstrating an actual successful attack method using already known vulnerabilities.

Phillip Misner, principal security group manager at the Microsoft Security Response Center, said in Microsoft's post announcing the program: "Speculative execution side channel vulnerabilities require an industry response." To that end, Microsoft says that they will share any discovered vulnerabilities and attacks with the industry in ethical, industry standard forms.

For more, read here and here.

 

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