BinGraph: Discovering mutant malware using hierarchical semantic signatures

Jonghoon Kwon, Heejo Lee

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

    13 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Malware landscape has been dramatically elevated over the last decade. The main reason of the increase is that new malware variants can be produced easily using simple code obfuscation techniques. Once the obfuscation is applied, the malware can change their syntactics while preserving semantics, and bypass anti-virus (AV) scanners. Malware authors, thus, commonly use the code obfuscation techniques to generate metamorphic malware. Nevertheless, signature based AV techniques are limited to detect the metamorphic malware since they are commonly based on the syntactic signature matching. In this paper, we propose BinGraph, a new mechanism that accurately discovers metamorphic malware. BinGraph leverages the semantics of malware, since the mutant malware is able to manipulate their syntax only. To this end, we first extract API calls from malware and convert to a hierarchical behavior graph that represents with identical 128 nodes based on the semantics. Later, we extract unique subgraphs from the hierarchical behavior graphs as semantic signatures representing common behaviors of a specific malware family. To evaluate BinGraph, we analyzed a total of 827 malware samples that consist of 10 malware families with 1,202 benign binaries. Among the malware, 20% samples randomly chosen from each malware family were used for extracting semantic signatures, and rest of them were used for assessing detection accuracy. Finally, only 32 subgraphs were selected as the semantic signatures. BinGraph discovered malware variants with 98% of detection accuracy.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2012 7th International Conference on Malicious and Unwanted Software, Malware 2012
    Pages104-111
    Number of pages8
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2012
    Event2012 7th International Conference on Malicious and Unwanted Software, Malware 2012 - Fajardo, PR, United States
    Duration: 2012 Oct 162012 Oct 18

    Publication series

    NameProceedings of the 2012 7th International Conference on Malicious and Unwanted Software, Malware 2012

    Other

    Other2012 7th International Conference on Malicious and Unwanted Software, Malware 2012
    Country/TerritoryUnited States
    CityFajardo, PR
    Period12/10/1612/10/18

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Software

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