Apple To Pay Teen Who Uncovered FaceTime Eavesdropping Bug

Apple will pay an Arizona teenager who revealed a major security flaw on its devices last month, it was reported.

According to The Washington Post, 14-year-old Grant Thompson’s family will be rewarded with a payout in addition to money for his education as a thanks for his discovery of an eavesdropping bug on the FaceTime app. 

Thompson realized the issue by accident when creating a group call with his friends in which he was able to listen in on the first individual he called despite the fact that he hadn’t answered the phone. The bug also enabled callers to see through front-facing cameras, meaning it allowed for both audio and visual spying.

On Thursday, Apple released a fix in the form of a software update to solve the problem. 

While it’s unclear how much of a monetary reward the teen may receive, Apple has previously offered experts $25,000 to $200,000 for finding security lapses, according to a 2016 CNBC report. The initiative is part of a wave “bug bounty programs” in which big tech companies seek “white hat” or ethical hackers to attempt safety breaches in an effort to identify loopholes and further secure products.

That same year, Uber advertised an award of up to $10,000 for hackers who discovered flaws within its software. The same has also been done by Google and Facebook.

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