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microsoft : Nano Server technical preview Bug Bounty Program Terms

Nano Server technical preview Bug Bounty Program Terms


Microsoft is pleased to announce the launch of a vulnerability bounty program for the latest technical preview versions of the Nano Server installation option of Windows Server 2016. The program begins 29th April 2016, and ends on 29th July 2016. For the duration of the program, individuals across the globe have the opportunity to submit vulnerabilities found in the technical preview versions of Nano Server. Qualified submissions are eligible for payment from a minimum of $500 USD to $15,000 USD, and bounties will be paid out at Microsoft’s discretion based on the quality and complexity of the vulnerability. Microsoft may pay more than $15,000 USD, depending on the entry quality and complexity.


Vulnerability submissions (“submissions”) provided to Microsoft must meet the following criteria to be eligible for payment:

  • Identify an original and previously unreported vulnerability in the latest Nano Server technical preview
  • Include concise reproducibility steps that are easily understood. (This allows submissions to be processed as quickly as possible and supports the highest payment for the type of vulnerability being reported)

Microsoft may reject any submission, that it determines (in its sole discretion) does not meet these criteria.


The payment range for eligible submissions will be based upon the following:

Vulnerability type | Proof of concept | Report | Payout range
RCE in Nano Server| Required| High Quality| Up to $15,000 USD
Required| Low Quality| Up to $5,000 USD
Remote Unauthenticated Denial of Service, Elevation of Privilege, or other higher severity vulnerabilities in specific Nano Server DLLs| Required| High Quality| Up to $9,000 USD
Required| Low Quality| Up to $1,500 USD
Other Important severity vulnerabilities impacting Nano Server DLLs (spoofing, information disclosure etc.)| Required| N/A| $500

*Higher payouts are possible, at Microsoft’s sole discretion, based on entry quality and complexity.


The aim of the bug bounty program is to uncover significant vulnerabilities that have a direct and demonstrable impact on the security of our users and our users’ data. While we encourage any submissions that describe security vulnerabilities in our browsers, the following are examples of vulnerabilities that will not earn a bounty reward under this program:

  • Vulnerabilities in anything earlier than the latest public technical preview of Nano Server
  • Vulnerabilities in user-generated content
  • Vulnerabilities that require administrative privileges
  • Bugs requiring extensive or unlikely user actions

We reserve the right to reject any submission that we determine, in our sole discretion, falls into any of these categories of vulnerabilities even if otherwise eligible for a bounty.


Send your complete submission to Microsoft at using the bug submission guidelines found here. We request you follow Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure when reporting all vulnerabilities. We are not responsible for submissions that we do not receive for any reason. We will exercise reasonable efforts to clarify indecipherable or incomplete submissions.

If you provide us with an otherwise eligible submission, but do not follow Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure—for example, by publishing the vulnerability when or before you submit it under this program—then Microsoft may deem your submission to be ineligible under this program. We may also bar you from receiving compensation under future Microsoft Bounty programs.


You are eligible to participate in this program if:

  • You are 14 years of age or older. If you are at least 14 years old, but are considered a minor in your place of residence, you need to ask your parent’s or legal guardian’s permission prior to participating in this program.
  • You are either an individual researcher participating in your own individual capacity, or you work for an organization that permits you to participate. You are responsible for reviewing your employer’s rules for participating in this program.
  • You do not fall under any of the ineligibility criteria listed below under “WHO IS NOT ELIGIBLE TO PARTICIPATE?”


  • You are a resident of any of countries under U.S. sanctions, such as Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, Syria and regions of Crimea;
  • You are currently an employee of Microsoft Corporation or a Microsoft subsidiary, or an immediate family (parent, sibling, spouse, or child) or household member of such an employee;
  • Within the six months prior to your submission you were an employee of Microsoft Corporation or a Microsoft subsidiary.
  • You currently perform services for Microsoft or a Microsoft subsidiary in an external staff capacity that requires access to the Microsoft Corporate Network, such as agency temporary worker, vendor employee, business guest, or contractor;
  • Within six months prior to your submission you performed services for Microsoft or a Microsoft subsidiary in an external staff capacity that required access to the Microsoft Corporate Network, such as agency temporary worker, vendor employees, business guest, or contractor; or
  • You are involved in any part of the administration and/or execution of this program; or
  • You are an entity that isn’t an individual person—e.g., companies themselves cannot participate.

The decisions made by Microsoft are final and binding. Microsoft may cancel this program at any time, for any reason. Be sure to read all of these terms before sending us any submission. If you send us a submission for this program, you are agreeing to these terms. If you do not want to agree with these terms, do not send us any submissions or otherwise participate in this program.


If you send us a submission for this program, you are agreeing that you will never disclose functioning exploit code (including binaries of that code) for the applicable vulnerability to any other entity, unless Microsoft makes that code generally publicly available or you are required by law to disclose it. This does not prevent you from discussing the vulnerability or showing the effects of the exploit in code.


  • You will receive an email message stating that we have received your submission.
  • Our engineers will review the submission and validate its eligibility. The review time will vary depending on the complexity and completeness of your submission, as well as on the number of submissions we receive.
  • After your submission has been validated, you will be contacted to provide the necessary paperwork(e.g., for tax documentation) to process your payment.
  • You will complete the necessary paperwork and send it to us. After we receive that paperwork and confirm that you are eligible to receive payment under this program, we will deem your submission to be qualified and process your bounty.


Bounties will be paid out at Microsoft’s discretion based on the quality and complexity of the vulnerability. Microsoft retains sole discretion in determining which submissions are qualified. The minimum bounty paid for a qualified submission is $500 USD up to a maximum of $15,000 USD. There are no restrictions on the number of qualified submissions an individual submitter can provide and be paid for.If we receive multiple bug reports for the same issue from different parties, the bounty will be granted to the first submission.

If you do not wish to receive a bounty payment for your vulnerability submission, Microsoft will gladly work with you to donate the bounty to an approved charity.

All individuals who have been awarded bounties will additionally be recognized on our Bounty Honor Roll page.


Please see the privacy statement regarding this program.


It is your responsibility to comply with any polices that your employer may have that would affect your eligibility to participate in the bug bounty programs. If you are participating in violation of your employer’s policies, you may be disqualified from participating or receiving bounty payment(s). Government employees who want to participate are required to provide a letter from their employer’s ethics compliance officer confirming their ability to participate in this program. All payments will be made in compliance with local laws, regulations, and ethics rules. Microsoft disclaims any and all liability or responsibility for disputes arising between an employee and their employer related to this matter.

If we determine that your submission is qualified, Microsoft will notify you by sending a reply to your email submission. If the notification that we send is returned as undeliverable, or if you are otherwise unreachable for any reason, we may not provide payment.

If there is a dispute as to who the qualified submitter is, we will consider the eligible submitter to be the authorized account holder of the email address used to enter the program. Before receiving a bounty payment, you are required to sign an Affidavit of Eligibility (a formal statement that verifies your personal information), a Liability/Publicity Release (which provides permission for Microsoft to use your name and likeness without pursuing future claims), and a W-9 tax form or W-8 BEN tax form, all within 30 calendar days of notification of validation. If you want to remain anonymous to the public, we will honor your request, but we must know your legal name in order to pay you. If your submission is qualified and you are 14 or older but are considered a minor in your place of legal residence, we may require your parent or legal guardian to sign all required forms on your behalf. If you do not complete the required forms as instructed or do not return the required forms within the time period listed on the notification message, we may not provide payment. We cannot process payment until we have received the fully executed required documentation.

If your submission is qualified, please note:

  • you may not designate someone else as the bounty recipient unless you are considered a minor in your place of residence;
  • if you are unable or unwilling to accept your bounty, we reserve the right to rescind it;
  • if you accept a bounty, you will be solely responsible for all applicable taxes related to accepting the payment(s); and
  • if you are eligible for this program but are considered a minor in your place of residence, we may award the bounty payment to your parent/legal guardian on your behalf.

Microsoft is not claiming any ownership rights to your submission. However, by providing your submission to Microsoft, you:

  • grant Microsoft the following non-exclusive, irrevocable, perpetual, royalty free, worldwide, sub-licensable license to the intellectual property in your submission: (i) to use, review, assess, test, and otherwise analyze your submission; (ii) to reproduce, modify, distribute, display and perform publically, and commercialize and create derivative works of your submission and all its content, in whole or in part, in connection with this program; and (iii) to feature your submission and all of its content in connection with the marketing, sale, or promotion of this program (including internal and external sales meetings, conference presentations, tradeshows, and screen shots of the submission in press releases) in all media (now known or later developed);
  • agree to sign any documentation that may be required for us or our designees to make sure of the rights you granted above;
  • understand and acknowledge that Microsoft may have developed or commissioned materials similar or identical to your submission, and you waive any claims you may have resulting from any similarities to your submission;
  • understand that you qualify for a one-time payment for each qualified vulnerability and are not guaranteed any other compensation or credit for use of your submission; and
  • represent that your submission is your own work and that you haven’t used information owned by another person or entity.

This program is hosted in the United States, and submissions are collected on computers in the United States. This program will be governed by the laws of the State of Washington, and you consent to the exclusive jurisdiction and venue of the courts of the State of Washington for any disputes that arise out of this program.

Microsoft thanks you for your participation.

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