Chrome the Only Major Browser Not Hacked at Pwn2Own

Posted on 28. Mar, 2010 by in News

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pwn2ownhackedWhile news has been sparse since Day 1 of Pwn2OWn, word is that Chrome was the only major browser to make it through the entire competition unscathed. That means it even got through the vaunted Windows XP Day 3, where many expected that Chrome would be exploited by using some of XP’s inherent holes. Not to mention withstanding the service packs that XP is nine years old.

Major browsers such as IE8, Safari and Firefox were hacked within minutes of the start.

Pwn2Own, by the way, is a contest that awards “researchers” cash prizes for successfully hacking computer platforms – prizes in the range of $10,000 to $15,000 plus the computer that they are hacked on.

OK, so Chrome made it through. But let’s think about this. Chrome has only been out since 2008, and there still aren’t that many users who have adopted it yet. W3schools, a web developer site, cites an 11.6% rate of users who visit their site as running Chrome for February 2010. And that is a site for early adopters of web technology! The real number for the entire web population is probably closer to five percent. That may be one of the reasons that researchers have yet to find vulnerabilities in it: they hack what they know, which are the other browsers out there.

Of course, there is also the idea that the other browsers on the market are simply weaker than Chrome which is also a possibility. There was some stir in the days leading up to the contest that Google quickly patched up a slew of security flaws in what was seen as a pre-emptive move. But when you are actually awarding outside experts with cash when they see a flaw in Chrome, it’s probably easier to patch up things that may be hard to see when they are right in front of you.

Anyone else ever had that problem before?

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Related posts:

  1. Chrome Still Standing at Pwn2Own
  2. Chrome Still Stands After Day One of Pwn2Own
  3. Google Offering $20,000 for Successful Cr-48 Hack

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13 Responses to “Chrome the Only Major Browser Not Hacked at Pwn2Own”

  1. Rob

    28. Mar, 2010

    The fact that Chrome wasn’t hacked doesn’t prove anything about its security, regardless of the last-minute patches and sandbox model. The original Pwn2Own article said explicitly that no one there actually attempted to hack the browser.

  2. Daniel Cawrey

    28. Mar, 2010

    No one even tried it… I could write an entire article on why that may be.

  3. Rich

    29. Mar, 2010

    Opera 10 browser hasn’t been hacked either. Surprising, since it has news reader, irc client, etc. built-in.

  4. Shadow14l

    29. Mar, 2010

    @Rob: The reason nobody attempted hacking chrome, was because no one had known any exploits or vulnerabilities. Before the competition you try and find your own ways to get in. It’s not as if everyone goes in there has never tried to hack the browser before. It clearly shows that Google has upped the ante with security. Nobody tried because nobody had a clue on how to get past Chrome’s security.

  5. [...] Chrome is a speedy, efficient, and safe browser on both the Windows and Mac platforms.  Heck, even the major hackers’ contest stayed away from the browser; that should speak [...]

  6. Daniel15

    14. Apr, 2010

    They forgot about Opera, which is probably the most secure out of all web browsers.

  7. [...] 8. Make sure you are using the most updated browser for your computer. Get a 2nd browser like Chrome, great browser it sandbox’s basically meaning it will confine an application to a restricted area. Also read this the only browser not hacked, but I don’t think it has been fully tested yet.. http://www.thechromesource.com/chrome-the-only-major-browser-not-hacked-at-pwn2own/ [...]

  8. [...] Make sure you are using the most updated browser for your computer. Get a 2nd browser like Chrome, great browser it sandbox’s your browsing activey , basically meaning it will confine an application to a restricted area. Also read this the only browser not hacked, but I don’t think it has been fully tested yet.. http://www.thechromesource.com/chrome-the-only-major-browser-not-hacked-at-pwn2own/ [...]

  9. [...] Chrome the Only Major Browser Not Hacked at Pwn2Own [...]

  10. [...] Security doesn’t seem to be a huge threat at this point further fueling the notion that Chrome went unhacked at Pwn2Own a few weeks ago. Your customers can get on board with Chrome 10 and see if it [...]

  11. [...] Security doesn’t seem to be a huge threat at this point further fueling the notion that Chrome went unhacked at Pwn2Own a few weeks ago. Your customers can get on board with Chrome 10 and see if it [...]

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