Pwn2Own 2011: Safari and IE8 Hacked Easily, Chrome Survives

We have some very interesting news for those you who are familiar with the annual Pwn2Own hacking contest, in which individuals try to unlock tight securities on some of the most popular operating systems on the market today in exchange for cash prizes.

The contest is ongoing as we speak, with the likes of the iPhone and Windows Phone 7 operating systems set to be put to the test by cunning hackers, but the headlines so far is all about Apple’s Safari browser, Microsoft’s IE8 browser and Google Chrome.

In what’s sure to be an embarrassment to Apple, it has been confirmed that French security company Vupen managed to completely expose Safari 5 running on a MacBook Air notebook in a mere five seconds. To prove the hack had been successful, the team installed a calculator application and then wrote a file to demonstrate that Mac OS X had been opened up, according to Zdnet.

Elsewhere, IE8 was also the victim of a planned attack, as researcher Stephen Fewer managed to use three vulnerabilities to take down IE8 completely, and even get out of protected mode successfully.

But the victory went to Google it seems, as Chrome remains unhacked due to participants failing to show up at the event, likely due to Google issuing a patch update to the software, despite Google themselves offering a bounty of $20,000 USD – as reported from Computer World.

As we mentioned earlier, iOS, Windows Phone 7 and BlackBerry OS is next on the agenda, so stay tuned to see if teams will be able to hack into those systems or not during the event. Let us know your thoughts on the results so far.

Are you surprised that Safari was exposed in a matter of seconds?

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Written by Alan Ng

Alan has been working for Product-Reviews since 2009 and became the Editor-in-chief in 2014. He has a passion for technology, the latest mobile phones and gadgets, and the gaming industry. Alan is a graduate of Canterbury Christ Church University and completed a B.A in Commercial Music in 2008. While expressing a keen interest in all areas that PR cover, you'll usually find Alan in the gaming section, where he'll be keeping enthusiasts up to date on all the latest news and reviews for consoles and PC.

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