Vulnerability disclosure policy

We recommend reading this disclosure policy fully before you report any vulnerabilities. This helps ensure that you understand the policy, and act in compliance with it.

This is the Bank of England Security Vulnerability Disclosure Policy.

We recommend reading this disclosure policy fully before you report any vulnerabilities. This helps ensure that you understand the policy, and act in compliance with it.

We actively endorse and support working with the research and security practitioner community to improve our online security.

We are committed to:

  • investigating and resolving security issues in our platform and services thoroughly
  • working in collaboration with the security community
  • responding promptly and actively

This page explains how the Bank of England works with the security research community to improve our online security.

Please note that this page does not provide any form of indemnity for any actions if they are either in breach of the law or of this policy. It does not provide an indemnity from the Bank of England or any third party.

This page was last updated on 2 December 2020.


This disclosure policy applies only to vulnerabilities in Bank of England products and services under the following conditions:

  • ‘In scope’ vulnerabilities must be original, previously unreported, and not already discovered by internal procedures.
  • Volumetric vulnerabilities are not in scope - meaning that simply overwhelming a service with a high volume of requests is not in scope.
  • Reports of non-exploitable vulnerabilities, or reports indicating that our services do not fully align with “best practice”, for example missing security headers, are not in scope.
  • TLS configuration weaknesses, for example “weak” cipher suite support or the presence of TLS1.0 support, are not in scope.
  • The policy applies to everyone, including for example the Bank of England staff, third party suppliers and general users of the Bank of England public services.

Bug bounty

Unfortunately, due to the Bank of England funding structure, it is not currently possible for us to offer a paid bug bounty programme. We will, however, make efforts to show our appreciation to security researchers who take the time and effort to investigate and report security vulnerabilities to us according to this policy wherever we can.

Reporting a vulnerability

If you have discovered something you believe to be an in-scope security vulnerability, first you should check the above details for more information about scope, then submit a vulnerability report via the HackerOne platform.

In your submission, include details of:

  • The website or page where the vulnerability can be observed.
  • A brief description of the type of vulnerability, for example an 'XSS vulnerability'.
Your report should provide a benign, non-destructive, proof of exploitation wherever possible. This helps to ensure that the report can be triaged quickly and accurately. It also reduces the likelihood of duplicate reports, or malicious exploitation of some vulnerabilities, such as subdomain takeovers.

What to expect

After submitting your vulnerability report, you will receive an acknowledgement reply usually within 72 working hours of your report being received.

The team will triage the reported vulnerability, and respond as soon as possible to let you know whether further information is required, whether the vulnerability is in or out of scope, or is a duplicate report. If remediation work is necessary, it is assigned to the appropriate Bank of England teams or supplier(s).

Priority for bug fixes or mitigations is assessed by looking at the impact severity and exploit complexity. Vulnerability reports might take some time to triage or address. You are welcome to enquire on the status of the process, but should avoid doing so more than once every 14 days. The reason is to allow our teams to focus on the reports as much as possible.

When the reported vulnerability is resolved, or remediation work is scheduled, the Vulnerability Disclosure Team will notify you, and invite you to confirm that the solution covers the vulnerability adequately.


Security researchers must NOT:

  • Access unnecessary amounts of data. For example, 2 or 3 records is enough to demonstrate most vulnerabilities, such as an enumeration or direct object reference vulnerability.
  • Use high-intensity invasive or destructive technical security scanning tools to find vulnerabilities.
  • Violate the privacy of the Bank of England users, staff, contractors, services or systems. For example, by sharing, redistributing and/or not properly securing data retrieved from our systems or services.
  • Communicate any vulnerabilities or associated details using methods not described in this policy.
  • Modify data in the Bank of England systems or services.
  • Disrupt the Bank of England services or systems.
  • Social engineer, 'phish' or physically attack Bank of England staff or infrastructure.
  • Disclose any vulnerabilities in the Bank of England systems or services to 3rd parties or the public, prior to the Bank of England confirming that those vulnerabilities have been mitigated or rectified. However, this is not intended to stop you notifying a vulnerability to 3rd parties for whom the vulnerability is directly relevant. An example would be where the vulnerability being reported is in a 3rd party software library or framework. Details of the specific vulnerability as it applies to the Bank of England must not be referenced in such reports.
  • Require financial compensation in order to disclose any vulnerabilities outside of a declared bug bounty reward structure (such as holding an organisation to ransom).
We ask you to delete securely any and all data retrieved during your research as soon as it is no longer required or within 1 month of the vulnerability being resolved, whichever occurs first.


This policy is designed to be compatible with common vulnerability disclosure good practice. It does not give you permission to act in any manner that is inconsistent with the law, or which might cause the Bank of England to be in breach of any of its legal obligations, including but not limited to:

  • The Computer Misuse Act (1990)
  • The General Data Protection Regulation 2016/679 (GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018
  • The Copyright, Designs and Patents Act (1988)
  • The Official Secrets Act (1989)
The Bank of England affirms that it will not seek prosecution of any security researcher who reports any security vulnerability on a Bank of England service or system, where the researcher has acted in good faith and in accordance with this disclosure policy. 
This page was last updated 31 January 2023

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