New research has revealed that the combined costs of breaches could have been easily avoided with the use of bug bounty programs.
HackerOne, the bug bounty and pen testing platform has found that four major data breaches – British Airways (2018), Carphone Warehouse (2018), TalkTalk (2015) and TicketMaster (2018) – could have been avoided for as little as £9,600 collectively.
The figure is based on bug bounty rewards paid to researchers that have discovered vulnerabilities similar to those found in the breaches. The research also investigated the costs, fines, and lawsuits associated with the said breaches.
Based on the average bug bounty prices, HackOne stated that collectively, the victim organisations would have had to pay between £9,600 to £32,000.
Prash Somaiya, security engineer, HackerOne commented:
“Attack surfaces are growing all the time, and it’s a significant challenge just trying to stay ahead of cyber-criminals. The most secure organizations realize there are many ways to identify where they are most vulnerable.
“By running bug bounty programs and asking hackers to find their weak spots, our customers have safely resolved over 120,000 vulnerabilities before a breach could occur. This research is a rough estimate on bounty prices, based on our existing programs across the same industries, but it does highlight that companies can save millions and reduce risk by being proactive when it comes to identifying and patching their vulnerabilities.”
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