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See detailEmpirical assessment of machine learning-based malware detectors for Android: Measuring the Gap between In-the-Lab and In-the-Wild Validation Scenarios
Allix, Kevin UL; Bissyande, Tegawendé François D Assise UL; Jerome, Quentin UL et al

in Empirical Software Engineering (2014)

To address the issue of malware detection through large sets of applications, researchers have recently started to investigate the capabilities of machine-learning techniques for proposing effective ... [more ▼]

To address the issue of malware detection through large sets of applications, researchers have recently started to investigate the capabilities of machine-learning techniques for proposing effective approaches. So far, several promising results were recorded in the literature, many approaches being assessed with what we call in the lab validation scenarios. This paper revisits the purpose of malware detection to discuss whether such in the lab validation scenarios provide reliable indications on the performance of malware detectors in real-world settings, aka in the wild. To this end, we have devised several Machine Learning classifiers that rely on a set of features built from applications’ CFGs. We use a sizeable dataset of over 50 000 Android applications collected from sources where state-of-the art approaches have selected their data. We show that, in the lab, our approach outperforms existing machine learning-based approaches. However, this high performance does not translate in high performance in the wild. The performance gap we observed—F-measures dropping from over 0.9 in the lab to below 0.1 in the wild —raises one important question: How do state-of-the-art approaches perform in the wild ? [less ▲]

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See detailA Forensic Analysis of Android Malware -- How is Malware Written and How It Could Be Detected?
Allix, Kevin UL; Jerome, Quentin UL; Bissyande, Tegawendé François D Assise UL et al

in Proceedings of the 2014 IEEE 38th Annual Computer Software and Applications Conference (2014, July)

We consider in this paper the analysis of a large set of malware and benign applications from the Android ecosystem. Although a large body of research work has dealt with Android malware over the last ... [more ▼]

We consider in this paper the analysis of a large set of malware and benign applications from the Android ecosystem. Although a large body of research work has dealt with Android malware over the last years, none has addressed it from a forensic point of view. After collecting over 500,000 applications from user markets and research repositories, we perform an analysis that yields precious insights on the writing process of Android malware. This study also explores some strange artifacts in the datasets, and the divergent capabilities of state-of-the-art antivirus to recognize/define malware. We further highlight some major weak usage and misunderstanding of Android security by the criminal community and show some patterns in their operational flow. Finally, using insights from this analysis, we build a naive malware detection scheme that could complement existing anti virus software. [less ▲]

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See detailUsing opcode-sequences to detect malicious Android applications
Jerome, Quentin UL; Allix, Kevin UL; State, Radu UL et al

in IEEE International Conference on Communications, ICC 2014, Sydney Australia, June 10-14, 2014 (2014, June)

Recently, the Android platform has seen its number of malicious applications increased sharply. Motivated by the easy application submission process and the number of alternative market places for ... [more ▼]

Recently, the Android platform has seen its number of malicious applications increased sharply. Motivated by the easy application submission process and the number of alternative market places for distributing Android applications, rogue authors are developing constantly new malicious programs. While current anti-virus software mainly relies on signature detection, the issue of alternative malware detection has to be addressed. In this paper, we present a feature based detection mechanism relying on opcode-sequences combined with machine learning techniques. We assess our tool on both a reference dataset known as Genome Project as well as on a wider sample of 40,000 applications retrieved from the Google Play Store. [less ▲]

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See detailLarge-scale Machine Learning-based Malware Detection: Confronting the "10-fold Cross Validation" Scheme with Reality
Allix, Kevin UL; Bissyande, Tegawendé François D Assise UL; Jerome, Quentin UL et al

in Proceedings of the 4th ACM Conference on Data and Application Security and Privacy (2014, March)

To address the issue of malware detection, researchers have recently started to investigate the capabilities of machine- learning techniques for proposing effective approaches. Sev- eral promising results ... [more ▼]

To address the issue of malware detection, researchers have recently started to investigate the capabilities of machine- learning techniques for proposing effective approaches. Sev- eral promising results were recorded in the literature, many approaches being assessed with the common “10-Fold cross validation” scheme. This paper revisits the purpose of mal- ware detection to discuss the adequacy of the “10-Fold” scheme for validating techniques that may not perform well in real- ity. To this end, we have devised several Machine Learning classifiers that rely on a novel set of features built from ap- plications’ CFGs. We use a sizeable dataset of over 50,000 Android applications collected from sources where state-of- the art approaches have selected their data. We show that our approach outperforms existing machine learning-based approaches. However, this high performance on usual-size datasets does not translate in high performance in the wild. [less ▲]

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See detailAdvanced Detection Tool for PDF Threats
Jerome, Quentin UL; Marchal, Samuel UL; State, Radu UL et al

in Proceedings of the sixth International Workshop on Autonomous and Spontaneous Security, RHUL, Egham, U.K., 12th-13th September 2013 (2013, September 13)

In this paper we introduce an efficient application for malicious PDF detection: ADEPT. With targeted attacks rising over the recent past, exploring a new detection and mitigation paradigm becomes ... [more ▼]

In this paper we introduce an efficient application for malicious PDF detection: ADEPT. With targeted attacks rising over the recent past, exploring a new detection and mitigation paradigm becomes mandatory. The use of malicious PDF files that exploit vulnerabilities in well-known PDF readers has become a popular vector for targeted at- tacks, for which few efficient approaches exist. Although simple in theory, parsing followed by analysis of such files is resource-intensive and may even be impossible due to several obfuscation and reader-specific artifacts. Our paper describes a new approach for detecting such malicious payloads that leverages machine learning techniques and an efficient feature selection mechanism for rapidly detecting anomalies. We assess our approach on a large selection of malicious files and report the experimental performance results for the developed prototype. [less ▲]

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