EU budget creates bug bounty programme to improve cybersecurity

Press release

Today the European Parliament approved the EU Budget for 2017. The budget sets aside 1.9 million euros in order to improve the EU's IT infrastructure by extending the free software audit programme (FOSSA) that MEPs Max Anderson and Julia Reda initiated two years ago, and by including a bug bounty approach in the programme that was proposed by MEP Marietje Schaake.

MEP Marietje Schaake (ALDE): “Bugs or flaws in software are used by criminals to infiltrate computers and entire ICT networks. The EU institutions must do what they can to have the most robust security. A bug bounty programme incentivises the discovery of software bugs through handing out financial rewards to every security researcher that is able to spot such a bug. This programme will allow for a much broader involvement of the security community in the common objective of ensuring a more secure IT infrastructure.”

"The FOSSA-project has already delivered results beyond just strengthening software security. Through the programme, the European Commission has developed its own set of criteria for assessing the quality of free software", says Greens/EFA MEP Julia Reda.

Greens/EFA MEP Max Andersson adds, "In the coming three years, we will reach out directly to the free software community and security professionals in order to build upon the skills of the next generation of coders. We hope that this programme will contribute to the support for free software in public administrations, which still rely too heavily on proprietary solutions".