Google Play attempts to make Android apps safer through rewards program

Google will pay $1,000 to those who find vulnerability in Android apps

Google Play has teamed up with HackerOne, an independent bug bounty platform, to create the Google Play Security Rewards System, with $1,000 up for grabs for flaws found in popular Android apps.

The program hopes to improve security research as well as app security which will benefit Android users, developers, and Google Play as a whole.

Apps such as Duolingo, Snapchat, Tinder, Dropbox, and Headspace are currently in the Google Play Security Reward program, with the hopes of more apps joining later on.

The system works by encouraging hackers to identify problems and vulnerabilities within different apps. However, the bugs have to follow certain criteria to qualify for the reward.

Advertisement - Article continues below
Advertisement - Article continues below

As of right now, the program is limited to remote-code-execution vulnerabilities and corresponding proof of concepts which run on devices with Android 4.4 or higher. This would include vulnerabilities that allow the downloading and execution of malicious code, the manipulation of a user interface to commit a transaction, and the opening of a webview leading to phishing attacks.

After a bug has been identified, the hacker works directly with the developer to fix the problem by reporting the issue to the firm through provided links. Once it is fixed, the hacker reports it to the Google Play Security Reward System, which will then consider it for the $1,000 reward, provided it followed the criteria.

"As the Android ecosystem evolves, we continue to invest in leading-edge ideas to strengthen security," said Vineet Buch, the director of product management at Google Play.

"Our goal is continue to make Android a safe computing platform by encouraging our app developers and hackers to work together to resolve unknown vulnerabilities, we are one step closer to that goal."

Featured Resources

Transform the operator experience with enhanced automation & analytics

Bring networking into the digital era

Download now

Artificially intelligent data centres

How the C-Suite is embracing continuous change to drive value

Download now

Deliver secure automated multicloud for containers with Red Hat and Juniper

Learn how to get started with the multicloud enabler from Red Hat and Juniper

Download now

Get the best out of your workforce

7 steps to unleashing their true potential with robotic process automation

Download now


Google Android

How to unroot Android

14 Jan 2019

The IT Pro Podcast: Is the future multi-cloud?

29 Nov 2019
Business strategy

Google accused of ‘union busting’

26 Nov 2019

Google confirms Android cameras can be hijacked to spy on you

20 Nov 2019

Most Popular


Patch issued for critical Windows bug

11 Dec 2019
Microsoft Azure

Microsoft, not Amazon, is going to win the cloud wars

30 Nov 2019
Microsoft Windows

This exploit could give users free Windows 7 updates beyond 2020

9 Dec 2019
big data

Google reveals UK’s most searched for terms in 2019

11 Dec 2019