Trend Micro Announces Pwn2Own Tokyo 2020 Hacking Competition

Facebook returns as partner of contest encouraging participants from around the world to find bugs in a range of smart devices

DALLAS, July 28, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Trend Micro Incorporated (TYO: 4704; TSE: 4704), a global leader in cybersecurity solutions, today announced details of the much-anticipated fall edition of its popular Pwn2Own competition, which this year will be open to virtual participants.

Pwn2Own Tokyo is usually held during the PacSec Conference in the Japanese capital, with the focus on hacking physical devices such as mobile phones, TVs, smart speakers and wireless routers.

Due to concerns around COVID-19, PacSec will take place virtually on Nov. 1-6, 2020. To ensure Pwn2Own Tokyo can still go ahead at the same time, we will be hosting live from Trend Micro's Toronto office (Nov. 3-5, 2020), where Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) researchers will be able to run exploit code submitted remotely by participants on the physical devices.

"Pwn2Own has been helping Trend Micro fulfil its mission to secure the connected world for more than a decade and we look forward to welcoming another group of extremely talented, highly-motivated entrants this year," said Brian Gorenc, senior director of vulnerability research and head of Trend Micro's Zero Day Initiative. "We're delighted to have found a way to ensure everyone who wants to will be able to participate, regardless of where they are in the world."

As for the contest itself, Facebook returns as a partner for this year's event, again offering their Oculus Quest and Portal from Facebook devices as targets. This year, competitors will also get to probe handsets from Huawei, Samsung, Google, Apple and Xiaomi, as well as wearables, smart home equipment, TVs, routers, and NAS servers.

The top prize for a single exploit is $160,000 if a contestant is able to compromise the iPhone and the payload runs with kernel privileges and survives a reboot. In total, Pwn2Own Tokyo will have 20 devices available as targets and more than $500,000 USD in prize money.

Participants will also be awarded Master of Pwn points for each successful attempt, with the individual accruing the most points awarded the coveted title of overall winner. They will also receive an impressive trophy and an additional 65,000 ZDI reward points, elevating them to instant Platinum status to unlock a range of additional benefits.

Entrants must register before the contest deadline (October 29, 2020), and will also need to send a detailed whitepaper by November 1, 2020 explaining their exploit chain, with instructions on how to run it. Those who have travel restrictions or travel-safety concerns can opt to compete remotely. 

Trend Micro will be blogging and tweeting results in real-time throughout the competition. We encourage you to keep an eye on the blog for the latest results. Follow us on Twitter at @thezdi and @trendmicro, and keep an eye on the #P2OTokyo hashtag for continuing coverage.

Full contest rules and additional Pwn2Own Tokyo Live from Toronto information can be found here: