PALO ALTO (KCBS) – Facebook doled out more than $40,000 worth of finders fees in August to hackers who identified security flaws in the uber-popular social networking site.

The initiative launched at the end of July offers a bug bounty, typically $500, for exposing potentially compromising flaws in Facebook code.

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Outsourcing security work gives the company cheap access to a wide range of expertise not necessarily available in-house, said KCBS technology analyst Larry Magid.

“There’s only so much their own engineers can do,” Magid said.

“When you’re one of the authors of the code, in some ways you’re the worst person to find flaws because you’re too close to it.”

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KCBS’ Matt Bigler Reports:

One hacker has already raked in $7,000 for work in identifying six different security issues on the site.

Facebook has promised that Hackers who comply with the company’s terms when they accept a bug bounty do not have to worry about legal action from the company.

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