Facebook has announced the Data Abuse Bounty Program in order to clamp down on app developers that collect user data and forward it to malicious parties who then go on to exploit it. The social media giant said that its bug report bounty programme has awarded people with as much as $40,000 so we could see similar awards given in this programme.
In the company's announcement, Collin Greene, Head of Product Security, said:
“This program will reward people with first-hand knowledge and proof of cases where a Facebook platform app collects and transfers people’s data to another party to be sold, stolen or used for scams or political influence. Just like the bug bounty program, we will reward based on the impact of each report. While there is no maximum, high impact bug reports have garnered as much as $40,000 for people who bring them to our attention.”
Any parties that are found guilty of mistreating user data will be subjected, but not limited, to the following actions:
- Termination of the application from Facebook
- Initiation of a forensic audit of related systems
- Legal action against the company and any relevant parties
Anyone that may have been affected by newly discovered breaches will also be alerted about the situation so that they can better prepare for any repercussions.
This measure is just the latest in a line of measures Facebook is taking to better regulate itself. On Tuesday and Wednesday, Mark Zuckerberg is going to be grilled by U.S. lawmakers so it needs to show that it is taking steps to show that it doesn’t need to be subjected to government regulations.