Generative adversarial networks and image-based malware classification

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Journal of Computer Virology and Hacking Techniques




For efficient malware removal, determination of malware threat levels, and damage estimation, malware family classification plays a critical role. In this paper, we extract features from malware executable files and represent them as images using various approaches. We then focus on generative adversarial networks (GAN) for multiclass classification and compare our GAN results to other popular machine learning techniques, including support vector machine (SVM), XGBoost, and restricted Boltzmann machines (RBM). We find that the AC-GAN discriminator is generally competitive with other machine learning techniques. We also evaluate the utility of the GAN generative model for adversarial attacks on image-based malware detection. While AC-GAN generated images are visually impressive, we find that they are easily distinguished from real malware images using any of several learning techniques. This result indicates that our GAN generated images are of surprisingly little value in adversarial attacks.


The preprint of this item can be found on arXiv at the following address:


Computer Science; Information Systems and Technology