Call it overconfidence or the upscale security level assurance of Chrome browser, Google is betting high on it. As per the this year’s Pwn2Own hacking contest, Google is offering $20,000 and a recently launched CR-48 laptop running on Chrome OS to a hacker who can exploit a security hole in its Chrome browser. The contestant must use the vulnerabilities purely present in Google-written code and escape the sandbox for the hack to be successful.
This year’s contest has been organized by the Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) team at HP TippingPoint, Interestingly, the contest is not limited only to Google’s own property hacking efforts. There are additional prizes totaling $105,000 for successful hacks on competitors properties like Microsoft Internet Explorer, Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox.
Besides browser Google has placed its mobile OS for the same contest. Hackers can test their hacking capabilities on Dell Venue Pro mobile running Windows 7, iPhone 4 running iOS, Blackberry Torch 9800 running Blackberry 6 OS and Nexus S running Android.
Successful hacks on these will net the able hacker $15,000 in cash and the device itself, as well as monetary bonuses for further ZDI submissions in 2011.
It is important to note that – contrary to several reports out there – the CR-48 laptop is merely a prize, and the actual hack target in Google’s part of the contest will be the Chrome browser on a laptop running either Windows 7 or Mac OS X.