Hackers Attack Chrome with Google's Permission
Google takes security very, very seriously. To prove their commitment they organized Pwnium, an open invitation to hackers to try and crack their Chrome browser with a zero-day exploit.
A hacker known only as PinkiePie and a Russian university student named Glazunov have taken up the gauntlet. Exploiting previously unknown vulnerabilities, PinkiePie was able to gain full system access to a Dell Inspiron laptop running a fully patched version of Windows 7 and Google Chrome. Glazunov was also able to breach Chorme's defenses.
PinkiePie reportedly worked on the hack for a week and a half and he walks away with a cool US$60,000 for his efforts. Now that is a brilliant return on time expended if we ever saw one.
Glazunov on the other hand is a security researcher and was also awarded the same amount for his work. But if you ask us, his exploits lack the mystique, romanticism and tongue-in-cheek humor of PinkiePie even though that does not make them any less impressive.
Google has already released new patches for the exploits found over the course of Pwnium and will probably be hard at work to cover up the faults for the foreseeable future. Even Chrome's much vaunted sandbox security has failed, so it looks like web browser developers need to go back to the drawing board and come up with better solutions.