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Apple paid a student $100,000 to hack a Mac

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Apple has generously rewarded one student who managed to hack a Mac by gaining access to a webcam. The amount the young hacker received is the Cupertino giant’s highest-ever award for vulnerability detection.

Ryan Pickren, a cybersecurity student at the Georgia Institute of Technology, recently became richer by a dizzying $100,500. This is the result of a vulnerability he found in Mac software.

The security hole discovered allowed access to the camera on Apple computers. The exploits found in iCloud Sharing and ShareBear, as well as bugs in the Safari 15 web browser, were used to do this.

Although the aforementioned vulnerability arose from a rather unexpected situation and is likely to be difficult to replicate, it makes it easy to take control of a victim’s computer. The most serious flaw becomes granting permission for the recipient to use the file via ShareBear – the permission is remembered, which opens the wicket for a potential hacker.

It’s worth noting that this isn’t the first vulnerability that Pickren has discovered – in 2019, he was able to access the iPhone’s camera and microphone, and he received a sum of $75,000 for reporting the bugs.