Security bugs

Linux kernel developers take security very seriously. As such, we’d like to know when a security bug is found so that it can be fixed and disclosed as quickly as possible. Please report security bugs to the Linux kernel security team.


The Linux kernel security team can be contacted by email at <>. This is a private list of security officers who will help verify the bug report and develop and release a fix. If you already have a fix, please include it with your report, as that can speed up the process considerably. It is possible that the security team will bring in extra help from area maintainers to understand and fix the security vulnerability.

As it is with any bug, the more information provided the easier it will be to diagnose and fix. Please review the procedure outlined in admin-guide/reporting-bugs.rst if you are unclear about what information is helpful. Any exploit code is very helpful and will not be released without consent from the reporter unless it has already been made public.


The goal of the Linux kernel security team is to work with the bug submitter to understand and fix the bug. We prefer to publish the fix as soon as possible, but try to avoid public discussion of the bug itself and leave that to others.

Publishing the fix may be delayed when the bug or the fix is not yet fully understood, the solution is not well-tested or for vendor coordination. However, we expect these delays to be short, measurable in days, not weeks or months. A release date is negotiated by the security team working with the bug submitter as well as vendors. However, the kernel security team holds the final say when setting a timeframe. The timeframe varies from immediate (esp. if it’s already publicly known bug) to a few weeks. As a basic default policy, we expect report date to release date to be on the order of 7 days.


Fixes for sensitive bugs, such as those that might lead to privilege escalations, may need to be coordinated with the private <> mailing list so that distribution vendors are well prepared to issue a fixed kernel upon public disclosure of the upstream fix. Distros will need some time to test the proposed patch and will generally request at least a few days of embargo, and vendor update publication prefers to happen Tuesday through Thursday. When appropriate, the security team can assist with this coordination, or the reporter can include linux-distros from the start. In this case, remember to prefix the email Subject line with “[vs]” as described in the linux-distros wiki: <>

CVE assignment

The security team does not normally assign CVEs, nor do we require them for reports or fixes, as this can needlessly complicate the process and may delay the bug handling. If a reporter wishes to have a CVE identifier assigned ahead of public disclosure, they will need to contact the private linux-distros list, described above. When such a CVE identifier is known before a patch is provided, it is desirable to mention it in the commit message, though.

Non-disclosure agreements

The Linux kernel security team is not a formal body and therefore unable to enter any non-disclosure agreements.