A Qualitative Analysis of Java Obfuscation

M. Karnick, J. MacBride, S. McGinnis, Y. Tang, and R. Ramachandran (USA)


Java obfuscation, Performance analysis, Evaluation metric


Code obfuscation is a promising defense technology that secures software in a way that makes the cost of reverse engineering prohibitively high. While there are a number of commercial obfuscation tools on the market, there is no standard measurement to analyze and evaluate their strength. This paper addresses this challenge. An analytical metrics is developed to quantify the performance of obfuscation in terms of potency, resilience, and cost. Four commercial obfuscators are then evaluated using the proposed method.

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