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United Airlines gives 1M miles to man who spotted website bugs

By Danielle Haynes
United Airlines gives 1M miles to man who spotted website bugs
A United Airlines plane taxis at O'Hare International Airport on November 5, 2014 in Chicago. UPI/Brian Kersey | License Photo

MELBOURNE, Fla., July 15 (UPI) -- United Airlines last week made good on its promise to award 1 million airline miles to anyone who pointed out a severe security bug on the company's website.

Jordan Wiens, a computer security analyst from Melbourne, Fla., posted on Twitter the so-called bounty he received for pointing out two problems he found on United's website.

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United offers a bounty program in which it offers varying levels of rewards for people who discover vulnerabilities on the website. The bigger reward offered is 1 million miles.

"Wow! @united really paid out! Got a million miles for my bug bounty submissions! Very cool," Wiens wrote on the post, which included screenshots of the miles deposits.

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Wiens told WTVT-TV in Tampa Bay, Fla., he found the flaws after about six hours of poking around on the website. He said that while the vulnerability he found was important, he didn't think it was worth his reward.

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"I did not expect to qualify for a full million," he said.

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So what does 1 million miles translate to in flights? In coach class, Wiens can book 40 round trips within the United States and Canada, 16 round trips to Europe or 12 round trips to Australia. In first class, he can book 20 round trips within the United States and Canada, eight to Europe and seven to Australia.

Wiens said he had been promising to take his wife to Hawaii for a while now, but now "She's like, 'you've got to do better than Hawaii.'"

"I have to give kudos to United for doing it," he said of the company's bounty program.

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