Russian Firm Provides $20m For Non-NATO Cellular Exploits – Supply:

The Russian agency Operation Zero has introduced a staggering $20m reward for hacking instruments able to compromising iPhones and Android units.

The corporate unveiled this elevated payout on X (previously Twitter) on Tuesday, aiming to draw top-tier researchers and developer groups to collaborate with their platform.

Below this program, Operation Zero is keen to pay $20m for important exploits similar to Distant Code Execution (RCE), Native Privilege Escalation (LPE) and Sandbox Escape (SBX) that kind a part of an entire chain assault.

“Mobile devices are central to our personal and professional lives, and as such are a prime target for both nation-state and non-nation-state actors. We have seen an exponential increase in attacks targeting mobile devices year over year, including the use of zero-day exploits,” defined Kern Smith, cell safety knowledgeable at Cimperium.

In response to Smith, whereas zero-day cell exploits for iOS and Android stay coveted instruments for menace actors, there’s a rising development in assaults that now not depend on OS vulnerabilities. Malware and phishing campaigns at the moment are concentrating on cell units, regardless of the OS.

Read more on this trend: Record Number of Mobile Phishing Attacks in 2022

“Mobile devices represent some of the most valuable and vulnerable targets for organizations and individuals, with high ROI and low risk for attackers, and this grey market is prioritizing that accordingly,” Smith added.

Nonetheless, the eyebrow-raising side of this announcement is Operation Zero’s stipulation that the tip consumer must belong to a non-NATO country. This geopolitical situation provides a layer of complexity to the state of affairs, elevating considerations in regards to the potential misuse of such highly effective hacking instruments.

The information has sparked debates inside the cybersecurity group, with some questioning the ethics and potential penalties of providing such profitable rewards for exploits that would compromise the safety and privateness of hundreds of thousands of smartphone customers.

“Given that Russia is OFAC sanctioned, working with Operation Zero will be in violation of technology transfer sanctions, as well as financial transfer sanctions,” commented Casey Ellis, founder and CTO at Bugcrowd.

“Also, the range of $200k to $20m is incredibly broad, and $20m is currently an irrationally high offer for a full mobile chain under this model.”

The timing of the Operation Zero announcement follows on the heels of OpenAI’s bug bounty program launched on April 11 2023, providing white hat hackers the chance to earn rewards of as much as $20,000 for uncovering safety vulnerabilities.

Date: 2023-09-29 16:46:24

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Alina A, Toronto
Alina A, Toronto
Alina A, an UofT graduate & Google Certified Cyber Security analyst, currently based in Toronto, Canada. She is passionate for Research and to write about Cyber-security related issues, trends and concerns in an emerging digital world.


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