Saturday, June 10

4 Legal Ways To Make Money As A Hacker

Want to make legal money as a hacker? Most people perceive hackers as bad guys but they work for big criminal agencies, exploiting the vulnerabilities of companies and using them against them. There are various legal means by which hackers earn money. I’ll tell you 4 legal ways to make money as a hacker.

1. Getting Employed By Company

A simple way a hacker can earn money legally is to work for a company mostly as a consultant to a company when it comes to issues relating to cybersecurity. A hacker can get employed to work for a company in any sector of the economy, provided their services are needed.

Hackers are not all bad, as people perceive there is a field of hacking known as ethical hacking. These are sometimes referred to as White Hat Hackers. These are potentially what we simply call good hackers. These hackers get paid to protect various security systems or websites from getting hacked. Their jobs are to check for vulnerabilities in the systems of the company or agency that hired them and fix that.

Essentially, they protect these companies like banks, security agencies, and many more from intruders who might exploit their weaknesses. If you are known as a competent and skilled hacker, companies will approach you with offers for work that can be either freelance or long-term. 

2. Working For The Government

Just as a hacker can work for a private company, he or she can also get on the government payroll to hack for the government. Governments around the world sometimes get hackers to track down other hackers or to accomplish other tasks. These tasks are mostly classified under national security, and they may include extorting military data, or even industrial and economic espionage.

3. Bug Bounty

You may be asking yourselves what a bug bounty is. Well, your answer comes right out. Most young hackers make huge sums of money from this. What they do is they prowl around massive sights, including Google, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Yahoo to find bugs that could be dangerous to the sites or allow in leakages from hackers. Once a bug is detected, the hacker can inform the company and get paid for his or her services.

legal ways to make money as a bug bounty

These are some popular companies and the bounties they offer. If a hacker happens to find a bug in their systems.

  • BitGo: $100 to $1,000
  • Dropbox: $216 to $4,913
  • Facebook: $500 plus
  • FastMail: $100 to $5,000
  • Pinterest: $50 to $1,500
  • Magento: $100 to $10,000
  • Microsoft: $500 to $100,000
  • Paypal: $100 to $10,000
  • Spotify: $250 plus
  • Stripe: $500 plus
  • Tumblr: $200 to $1,000
  • Western Union: $100 to $5,000

Searching for Bugs sure isn’t an easy job, but some companies give hackers handsome rewards that make it worth it.

4. Hacking Events

Another way a hacker can earn money legally is through live hacking events, where hackers come together to hack a particular device or piece of software. The Pwn2Own event, which is held annually since 2007, for instance, is one of the biggest hacking events and takes place every year at the CanSecWest Security Conference participants at the event are allowed to hack a device, such as a phone, a MacBook, or even a car. If they can hack the device, they win it for themselves.

The event also offers cash prizes for hacking software such as Web browsers, enterprise applications, and servers. The event has a large prize pool and the results are covered by the tech press as well. This makes it a great place for new hackers to make their name, as well as meet other people in the ethical hacking community.

Bottom Line

A variety of options are open to earn money from hacking, and you can start it as a side gig to see if you enjoy it before going full-time.  


A bug bounty program is a system where companies offer rewards to individuals who find and report security vulnerabilities in their software or systems.

Live hacking events like Pwn2Own are typically open to experienced hackers who have a proven track record in ethical hacking. However, some events may also have categories for beginners or newcomers to the field.

The amount of money you can make as an ethical hacker depends on your skills and experience, as well as the type of work you do. Some top ethical hackers can earn six-figure salaries, while others may make a few thousand dollars per bug bounty or live hacking event.

Many major tech companies, including Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and PayPal, offer bug bounty programs. Other companies, such as Western Union and Dropbox, also offer bug bounties.

See Also: Can You Hack Without Coding? The Answer Might Surprise You

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