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.

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“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.”

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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