One of the most notorious hackers in the world, Phineas Fisher, has offered a bounty of $100,000 USD to any hacker who is able to break into banks or oil firms to leak information that can be considered beneficial to the public’s interest.
In his newest manifesto, called Hacktivist Bug Hunting Program, the hacker offered to pay other professionals who could hack organizations such as Halliburton, a South African oil company, which was cited in the project. Fisher says that hacktivism can be a very powerful tool when it comes to fighting inequality and capitalism. He stated,
“Hacking to obtain and leak documents with public interest is one of the best ways for hackers to use their abilities to benefit society.”
He also claimed that he was not trying to “make anyone rich”, but that the bounty was just to help hackers to be well-paid for helping society, something that often does not happen.
His “bounty program” was in hopes of inspiring hackers and many institutions have bug bounty programs that are popular everywhere, and often pay hackers to find bugs and threats in systems. He is paying people for finding threats in large private companies.
Attacks to large oil companies are far from rare. In fact, Pemex, an oil firm based in Mexico, was recently hit by ransomware, which halted all activities of the company. The problem was dealt with soon enough and no ransom was ever paid. Most of the attacks have a financial motivation, though, and are not part of hacktivism. Phineas Fisher certainly wants to change that.