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Apple Security Research Launches With Website, Blog, And Research Device Program Applications

In addition to announcing its new Lockdown Mode feature this summer, the company mentioned an improved bounty program, a donation to fund ethical security research, and other things. Apple Security Research has now officially launched, complete with a dedicated website, blog, information on the bounty changes, applications for the Research Device Programs, and more.

Today, Apple launched the new security hub website, which was preceded by two blog posts.

“Our ground-breaking security technologies safeguard the users of over 1.8 billion active devices worldwide.” Hear about the most recent advancements in Apple security from our engineering teams, send us your research, and collaborate directly with us to be recognized and rewarded for helping to keep our users safe.”

Changes to Apple Security Bounty

First, Apple described how its security bounty program has been improved:

“In the two and a half years since we launched our program, we’ve awarded nearly $20 million in total payments to researchers, with an average payout of $40,000 in the Product category and 20 separate awards of $100,000 or more for high-impact issues.” This makes Apple Security Bounty the fastest-growing bounty program in industry history, to the best of our knowledge.

During this time, our team has collaborated with researchers from all over the world, and we’ve learned a few things we can do better.

First and foremost, we are responding much more quickly. We received far more submissions than we anticipated at times, so we expanded our team and worked hard to complete an initial evaluation of nearly every report we receive within two weeks, and in most cases within six days.

Following that, we’re making it simpler for researchers to report problems and communicate with our teams. Our Apple Security Research website now includes a new way to send us web-based research and receive real-time status updates. Simply sign in with your Apple ID and follow the on-screen instructions to send us a detailed report. You can then track the status of your report and securely communicate with Apple engineers while we investigate.”

“We’re also increasing transparency.” Our website now includes comprehensive Apple Security Bounty information as well as evaluation criteria. Bounty categories include ranges and examples to help you decide where to focus your research and predict whether your report will qualify for a specific reward. We’ve set submission thresholds for submissions that affect Apple services and infrastructure, as well as our products.”

Security Research Device applications are now available

Another announcement made on the new website is that the application window for Apple Security Research Devices is now open:

“We’re also accepting applications for the 2023 Apple Security Research Device Program beginning today and running through November 30, 2022.” This program includes an iPhone dedicated solely to security research, and it can help you get started, go deeper, or improve the efficiency of your iOS research work.”

Blog about security

Apple announced the “next generation of XNU memory safety: kalloc type” in the first post of its new technical security blog.

“To kick off our security research blog, we present the first in a series of technical posts delving into critical memory safety upgrades in XNU, the kernel at the heart of the iPhone, iPad, and Mac.” Because nearly all popular user devices today rely on code written in “memory-unsafe” programming languages like C and C++, which do not provide strong guarantees that prevent certain classes of software bugs, improving memory safety is an important goal for engineering teams across the industry.”

The full post can be found on Apple’s new security website.

Apple has security job openings

Additionally, Apple has a link where you can submit your resume and express your interest in security roles at the company.

More

There are a few additional resources for developers, a link to the Apple Platform Security Guide, and Apple Support at the bottom of Apple’s new security website.

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