Google's Project Zero Team Holds Bug Discovery Contest

Google's Project Zero team which is dedicated to making the web a safer place for everyone, has just announced on their official blog that they're now going to hold their very own contest called 'The Project Zero Prize' and will offer prize slots for first, second, and third place, with the first prize winner receiving $200,000. While that may sound like quite a bit, second and third place winning entries aren't really left with the short end of the stick, as winners of those prize slots will end up with $100,000 and $50,000 respectively. Suffice it to say that anyone who wins one of the three prizes will be rewarded handsomely for their hard working efforts to outdo other contestants.

The Project Zero team notes that holding their own contest is due mostly to having a desire to continue the momentum of bug discovery, which they attribute in large part to hacking contests, although a good number of bugs are found due to rewards programs that Google puts up. While the rewards are high, the requirements for meeting eligibility to win those rewards might be just as high, with Project Zero stating that each successful submission to this contest must be able to discover a vulnerability or bug chain that is not only capable of executing code on multiple Android devices remotely, but doing so using only the phone number that belongs to those specific devices, as well as the email address for those devices.

The contest period lasts for six months and begins today, which may seem like a long time but it has to do with the "structure" of the contest that Project Zero has set up. According to the contest guidelines, any participant must report bugs to the Android Issue Tracker as they're discovered, and they can then use those reported bugs as part of their submission during the six-month time frame. Additionally, only the person who submitted the bug to the Android Issue Tracker is allowed to use that bug as part of his or her submission, so Project Zero recommends that participants report their bugs to the tracker as early and as often as they can. Project Zero also notes that if a bug is not used, it may still be eligible for Google's various rewards programs for Android bugs, although not until after the contest has ended. If you're interested, the Project Zero team provides a full list of contest rules and guidelines that you can check out before getting started.

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Justin has written for Android Headlines since 2012 and currently adopts a Editor role with a specific focus on mobile gaming and game-streaming services. Prior to the move to Android Headlines Justin spent almost eight years working directly within the wireless industry. Contact him at [email protected]