United Airlines has awarded “millions of frequent flier miles” to hackers who have found out gaps in the carrier’s web security, in a first for the U.S. airline industry, according to a report published on Reuters.
However, some tweets from those hackers have said that they have got small awards than the company had announced.
“Well that answers that question. Found out which of my two bugs was worth a million because the other is apparently worth 250k,” one of the tweets posted by Jordan Wiens @psifertex.
It is also said that some terms of the agreement does not allow Wiens from disclosing the bug he had discovered.
On the other hand, the company concerned confirmed with Reuters that it has paid out two awards worth 1 million miles each, worth dozens of free domestic flights on the airline.
“We believe that this program will further bolster our security and allow us to continue to provide excellent service,” the United said on its website.
“It has hoped to trailblaze in the area of airline web security by offering “bug bounties” for uncovering cyber risks. Through the program, researchers flag problems before malicious hackers can exploit them. The cost can be less than hiring outside consultancies,” the news report read.
The Trade group Airlines for America said in a statement that all the United State carriers should conduct tests to make sure, if their systems are secure.
Beyond the Bug bounty program, the company also has tested systems internally and engaged cyber security firms to keep its websites secure.