Bug Bounty Hunters Earn $1.2 Million at Chinese Hacking Competition
Bug bounty hunters have earned a total of more than $1.2 million over the weekend at the 2020 Tianfu Cup International PWN Contest, a major hacking competition that takes place every year in China.
Organizers of the event describe it as “China’s Pwn2Own” and this year the prize pool exceeded $1 million.
A total of 15 teams signed up for the 2020 Tianfu Cup and 8 of them earned money for their exploits. The winner was a team representing Chinese cybersecurity firm Qihoo 360, which earned over $740,000.
The Qihoo 360 team earned $100,000 for a Chrome exploit that achieved remote code execution with a sandbox escape, $180,000 for a VMware ESXi guest to host escape, $40,000 for a Firefox exploit, $60,000 for a Qemu exploit, and $18,000 for an Adobe Reader exploit.
The same team also hacked an iPhone 11 Pro with iOS 14 and earned $180,000 for an exploit that achieved remote code execution with a sandbox escape. They also targeted a Samsung Galaxy S20, which earned them $80,000 as they demonstrated an exploit that achieved remote code execution with root privileges.
The Qihoo 360 team also hacked Windows 10 and CentOS 8, which earned them $40,000 for each exploit chain.
Another team also hacked the iPhone 11 Pro and earned $180,000. It’s worth noting that the top prize for hacking the iPhone was $300,000, for a remote jailbreak.
Other participants targeted Safari, Docker, Adobe Reader, the Galaxy S20, Ubuntu, and Asus and TP-Link routers. Overall, organizers said, participants successfully hacked 11 of the 16 targets.
At last year’s event, participants earned over half a million dollars for hacking products from Apple, Google, Microsoft, VMware and others.
The Zero Day Initiative’s Pwn2Own Tokyo competition also took place last week, but participants only earned $136,000 for 23 unique vulnerabilities. White hat hackers remotely demonstrated their exploits against routers, NAS devices and smart TVs.