Sony will now pay researchers $50,000+ for critical PS4 bugs

20th Anniversary PlayStation 4 laid flat.
20th Anniversary PlayStation 4 laid flat.
Greg Kumparak

Think you've found a way to consistently brick someone's PS4, or make it run code that it shouldn't? Sony wants to know — and now they're willing to pay.

This morning Sony announced that it's opening its bug bounty program to the public, and will pay for newly discovered bugs and exploits that impact either the PlayStation 4 or their online PlayStation Network.

Sony is pretty explicit about what kind of bugs they're looking for: anything that hits "the PlayStation 4 system, operating system, accessories" in its current and/or beta form, or that impacts any of a handful of PlayStation Network domains/APIs. Tactics like socially engineering Sony employees or DDoSing their servers, meanwhile, aren't allowed.

Bugs found in the PlayStation Network will have base bounties of $100-$3,000 or more (depending on severity), while critical bugs found related to the PS4 itself will pay $50,000 or more. You can see Sony's breakdown, including what's in/out of the program's scope, right here.

(Note the focus on PlayStation 4. Finding a new way to break the ol' PS2 is cool and all, but Sony won't be dishing out any money for it.)

In a blog post announcing the bug bounty program, Sony notes that they've actually been running this program quietly with a handful of researchers for a while now — today, though, they're opening it up to anyone with the skill and interest. The program's HackerOne page says Sony has already paid out over $170,000 to researchers, with an average bounty of around $400.

Microsoft launched a similar bug bounty program for Xbox Live earlier this year.

More From

  • Tech shares set fresh records despite uncertain economy

    All major indices gained ground during regular trading, while tech stocks did even better. Such is the mood on Wall Street regarding the health of technology companies. It's not hard to find bullish sentiment, jockeying to push tech shares higher.

  • Here's a list of tech companies that the SBA says took PPP money

    The U.S. Treasury Department released Monday a highly anticipated trove of data identifying every company that has received a loan of more than $150,000 from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) -- a list that includes some of the hottest names in the tech startup world, including Bolt Mobility, Getaround, Luminar, Stackin, TuSimple and Velodyne. The list also provides the number of jobs that each company said it plans to retain as a result of the funds. The $2 trillion CARES Act passed by Congress and signed by President Trump, included PPP loans designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.

  • Sequoia announces $1.35 billion venture and growth funds for India and Southeast Asia

    Sequoia Capital India on Monday announced it has secured $1.35 billion from LPs for two new funds as the storied venture firm looks to ramp up its investments in the world’s second-largest internet market and Southeast Asia. The two new funds -- a $525 million venture fund and a $825 million growth fund -- will help the VC firm, which operates in India and Southeast Asia through one arm, more comprehensively serve the startup ecosystem in the region, said Shailendra Singh, a managing director at Sequoia Capital India.

  • US tech giants halt Hong Kong police help

    Facebook and Twitter have confirmed they have suspended processing demands for user data from Hong Kong authorities following the introduction of a new Beijing-imposed national security law. A spokesperson for Facebook told TechCrunch it will "pause" the processing of data demands until it can better understand the new national security law, "including formal human rights due diligence and consultations with human rights experts." The spokesperson added: "We believe freedom of expression is a fundamental human right and support the right of people to express themselves without fear for their safety or other repercussions."