Mobile Pwn2Own: $300k prize pool awaits successful contestants

The next Mobile Pwn2own competition is to be held in November at the PacSec Applied Security Conference in Tokyo, and contestants can earn as much as $100,000 for a successful exploit, HP ZDI’s manager Brian Gorenc has announced.

The aforementioned prize will be given out to the first one that compromises the baseband processor of any of the mobile devices available for selection, and lesser prizes will go to those that compromise:

  • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, USB or NFC via a wireless or a wired attack ($50,000)
  • a Mobile Web Browser ($40,000 + $10,000 from Google if the browser is Chrome on Android, either on Google Nexus 4 or Samsung Galaxy S4)
  • a Mobile Application/Operating System ($40,000)
  • Messaging Services – SMS, MMS, or CMAS ($70,000)

There will be only one winner in all categories except the Mobile Web Browser one, where Google has decided to offer $10k to all contestants that successfully target Chrome on Android.

“Be the first to compromise a selected target in one of the categories using a previously unknown vulnerability (one that has not been disclosed to the affected vendor). You’ve got 30 minutes to complete your attempt. When you’ve successfully demonstrated your exploit and “pwned’ the targeted device, you need to provide ZDI with a fully functioning exploit and a whitepaper detailing all of the vulnerabilities and techniques utilized in your attack,” Gorenc explained.

“A successful attack against these devices must require little or no user interaction and the initial vulnerability used in the attack must be in the registered category. The contestant must demonstrate remote code execution by bypassing sandboxes (if applicable) and exfiltrating sensitive information, silently calling long-distance numbers, or eavesdropping on conversations. To avoid interfering with licensed carrier networks, all RF attacks must be completed within the provided RF isolation enclosure. The vulnerabilities utilized in the attack must be unpublished 0-days.”

More details about the contest and its rules can be perused here.

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