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The CrowdCurity team featuring Christian Hansen (second from left) The CrowdCurity team featuring Christian Hansen (second from left) Supplied Featured

A Danish-based startup is taking a fresh approach to security testing, recruiting white hat hackers to test vulnerabilities for a reward.

Co-founder Christian Hansen told iTWire his startup CrowdCurity had taken cues from big players like Mozilla and Google, who have a history of recruiting hackers to help solve security issues.

"These companies offer big rewards, so we decided to offer a way for small to medium sized companies to fix any vulnerabilties they might have in the same way," Hansen said in an interview.

"It's free for any company, unless they have vulnerabilities. The company then pays per vulnerability, and often they find out about a whole heap of issues that they otherwise wouldn't have noticed."

He said CrowdCurity takes a modest 20% fee on top of what the hacker receives, and that the fee was small compared to the amount of damage that could be caused by a black hat intruder.

The company has recruited 'hall of fame' hackers (yes, the hacking hall of fame is a thing!) alongside up and comers who want a slice of the pie, and each company will potentially be targeted by hundreds of hackers, intentionally of course, who only earn a reward if they're the first to point out a certain vulnerability.

While the Danish team hasn't had many clients yet it's received a lot of interest from other startups and companies which are conscious about potential security risks.

"Google gets paid per click, and with CrowdCurity we want to do the same," Hansen said.

"You pay per hack, or vulnerability. It's the world's simplest pricing model, and both testers and businesses stand to benefit in a big way."

Hansen's company is currently pursuing options from venture capitalists, and is also seeking companies who are wanting to be tested.

For more info check out CrowdCurity's website here.

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