Nintendo is offering rewards up to $20,000 to hackers who can discover security vulnerabilities on the Nintendo Switch or 3DS. The offer is up through the Hacker One website, and it specifically gives rewards for piracy, cheating, and system exploits.
The move responds to an increasing wave of bugs and holes being found on the 3DS, and the threat that there is a similar future in the horizon for the new hybrid console. The company, however, has not reported any big security breaches.
Web sites and YouTube channels have popped up recently saying there are PC ports of Switch games already available which are scams, but there have been legitimate efforts towards hacking and modding the latest Nintendo platform.
Nintendo hacker reward list:
• Piracy, including:
• Game application dumping
• Copied game application execution
• Cheating, including:
• Game application modification
• Save data modification
• Dissemination of inappropriate content to children
The Japanese giant also claimed to be interested in receiving information about system vulnerabilities ranging from privilege escalation and kernel takeover to ARM TrustZone takeover in particular on the Switch.
The Hacker One publication is an expansion of the call to all hackers to hunt for bugs on the Nintendo 3DS back in December last year. It took the video game powerhouse five years to ask the community for help in their fight against piracy.
However, it has only been a little over a month since the Switch launched, so Nintendo is showing greater concern for the security of this platform than that of prior systems.
So far, only three hackers have reported vulnerabilities in the new console, and the company has rewarded them accordingly over the last couple of days. The amounts they earned and the exploits they found remain private.
How does the bounty system work?
Hacker One claims the bounty companies award for the bugs they find is greater if they are both highly compromising and easy to implement. They also take into consideration, of course, if the flaw is widely known and if someone is the first to find and report it.
There are already public initiatives like PegaSwitch to hack the Nintendo Switch and find out every aspect of how it works. Understanding every aspect of the hardware and software is essential for hackers to reverse-engineer solutions that allow them to hack it.
Primarily, their objective is to turn the Switch into a machine that can run other games, of course, but there is also the idea of making it run Windows, MacOS, and whatever comes through their tech-savvy minds.
Source: Hacker One