Not a week goes by without another major business or Internet service announcing a data breach. And while many companies have begun to adopt bug bounty programs to encourage the reporting of vulnerabilities by outside security researchers, they’ve done so largely inconsistently. That’s the reason for Disclose.io, a collaborative and open source effort to create an open source standard for bug bounty and vulnerability-disclosure programs that protects well-intentioned hackers.
The lack of consistency in companies’ bug-disclosure programsâ€”and the absence of “safe harbor” language that protects well-intended hackers from legal action in many of themâ€”can discourage anyone who discovers a security bug from reporting it. And vague language in a disclosure program can not only discourage cooperation but can also lead to public-relations disasters and a da