https://doi.org/10.31979/etd.srkx-n4pf">

Publication Date

Spring 2012

Degree Type

Master's Project

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Computer Science

Abstract

The unauthorized copying of software is often referred to as software piracy. Soft- ware piracy causes billions of dollars of annual losses for companies and governments worldwide. In this project, we analyze a method for detecting software piracy. A meta- morphic generator is used to create morphed copies of a base piece of software. A hidden Markov Model is trained on the opcode sequences extracted from these mor- phed copies. The trained model is then used to score suspect software to determine its similarity to the base software. A high score indicates that the suspect software may be a modified version of the base software and, therefore, further investigation is warranted. In contrast, a low score indicates that the suspect software differs sig- nificantly from the base software. We show that our approach is robust, in the sense that the base software must be extensively modified before it is not detected.

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