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You Shall Not Pass! Measuring, Predicting, and Detecting Malware Behavior

Mariconti, Enrico; (2019) You Shall Not Pass! Measuring, Predicting, and Detecting Malware Behavior. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Researchers have been fighting malicious behavior on the Internet for several decades. The arms race is far from being close to an end, but this PhD work is intended to be another step towards the goal of making the Internet a safer place. My PhD has focused on measuring, predicting, and detecting malicious behavior on the Internet; we focused our efforts towards three different paths: establishing causality relations into malicious actions, predicting the actions taken by an attacker, and detecting malicious software. This work tried to understand the causes of malicious behavior in different scenarios (sandboxing, web browsing), by applying a novel statistical framework and statistical tests to determine what triggers malware. We also used deep learning algorithms to predict what actions an attacker would perform, with the goal of anticipating and countering the attacker’s moves. Moreover, we worked on malware detection for Android, by modeling sequences of API with Markov Chains and applying machine learning algorithms to classify benign and malicious apps. The methodology, design, and results of our research are relevant state of the art in the field; we will go through the different contributions that we worked on during my PhD to explain the design choices, the statistical methods and the takeaways characterizing them. We will show how these systems have an impact on current tools development and future research trends.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: You Shall Not Pass! Measuring, Predicting, and Detecting Malware Behavior
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2019. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/ 4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms.
Keywords: Malware, System Security, Machine Learning, Information Security, Artificial Intelligence, Statistical Methods
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Security and Crime Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10075151
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