from SUKUOLUHLE NDLOVU in Masvingo, Zimbabwe
MASVINGO – SYNONYMOUS with one of the most breathtaking architectural landscapes the globe over, it is probably befitting that the ancient Zimbabwean town of Masvingo can now lay claim to producing one of the world’s foremost bug bounty hunters.
To the uninitiated, Masvingo elicits images of Great Zimbabwe, the fabulous stone palace built with granite blocks and no mortar. A bug bounty hunter is an individual who knows the “nuts and bolts” of cyber security.
They are experts in detecting bugs or flaws, one of the most relevant skills in a world increasingly growing digital but whose revolution in that regard is under the increasing threat of cyber-criminals.
Aged only 21, Masvingo-born Pardon Mukoyi has the world of cyber security at his feet.
After making an impression in his homeland, where he developed a first-of-its-kind cyber security system (it is suitably named “Eyewatch), the ex-Information Systems student at Great Zimbabwe University (GUZ) has made is making a mark around the globe.
His ranking at number five in the AT & T leader-board in bounty hunting is a lofty rating.
It is the latest feather in Mukoyi’s cap after his exploits that have seen him work the world’s biggest technology companies, banks and multilateral institutions.
“So far l have helped companies like Apple, AT & T and Microsoft and different banks including one in Scotland. There is also the United Nations (UN), Huawei, and 12 banks in Europe,” he told CAJ News Africa in an interview.
It is anticipated his Eyewatch a free and open source cyber security intrusion prevention and detection system written in Python, will improve the security online for Zimbabwe and internationally.
Mukoyi finished designing his invention last month (January).
“I hope to design more secure and advanced cyber systems in the near future and want to go for international cyber security conferences as I know that no Zimbabwean has ever gone there to represent the country,” he said patriotically.
Mukoyi’s passion for computers started from an early age.
“I grew up playing (computer) games,” he reminisced.
“…and at the age of eight, I developed the love for computers. This has led me to exploring a lot of things on computers,” the bug bounty hunter said.
“I started doing this at school and now I am working from home. Last year, l obtained a total number of 312 bugs,” he exclusively told CAJ News Africa.
Humble as ever despite being held in high regard abroad, Mukoyo took CAJ News Africa through his career which is highly relevant in the fourth industrial revolution but remains incomprehensible to many.
He defined it as an act or a job of finding security flows in systems, with many of biggest companies and institutions in the world under threat.
“I would also like to advise companies in Zimbabwe and Africa to introduce responsible disclosure,” Mukoyo said.
It is defined as “a vulnerability disclosure model in which a vulnerability or an issue is disclosed only after a period of time that allows for the susceptibility or issue to be patched or mended.”
“UN and the United States Department of Defense have a responsible disclosure which I participated a lot in,” Mukoyo said.
He also used the example of The Netherlands responsible disclosure.
– CAJ News