Hackers donate $5,000 to WHO

The hackathon winner described the event as “nothing less than a grand slam”

Hackers participating in a virtual live hacking event have donated over $5,000 of their bounties, earned by reporting real-world vulnerabilities, to the World Health Organisation’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund

Over the course of the two-week event, organised by HackerOne and in partnership with Verizon Media, 50 participants from 14 countries rooted out 286 real-world vulnerabilities in digital assets, 80% of which were high risk or critical.

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The reports earned the ethical hackers over $673,000 in bounties, over $5,000 of which was donated to WHO through HackerOne’s Hack For Good initiative.

The Most Valuable Hacker title was awarded to US representative Jon Colston, also known as @mayonaise, who described HackerOne’s first virtual event as “nothing less than a grand slam”.

“Attempting to explain each way HackerOne consistently exceeds expectations would be an exhaustive effort,” he said. “From the daily broadcast streams to engaging online interactions and games, I experienced a community growing together. That is something you can not fake and is a testament to what you are building is exceptional. I look forward to seeing what you can come up with next!”

The hackathon’s donation to WHO comes after the organisation was forced to double its security team following a targeted phishing campaign since mid-March, when the coronavirus moved up to pandemic status.

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Earlier this week, 2,732 email addresses and passwords belonging to former and current WHO employees were leaked online, in what was described as a “harassment campaign”. Director of SITE Intelligence Group Rita Katz said that Neo-Nazis and white supremacists were responsible for posting the credentials onto sites such as 4chan and Pastebin.

NIH, CDC, and the Gates Foundation were also victims of the hacking spree.

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