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Software Protection by Polymorphic and Metamorphic Transformations

Award Information

Department of Defense
Office of the Secretary of Defense
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2006 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Pikewerks Corporation
105 A Church Street Madison, AL -
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 2006
Title: Software Protection by Polymorphic and Metamorphic Transformations
Agency / Branch: DOD / OSD
Contract: FA8650-06-C-8051
Award Amount: $746,370.00


Software critical to national security and essential to a corporation's survival can easily be exploited through reverse engineering and unauthorized access. Without innovative protection initiatives, these vulnerabilities can be leveraged by an attacker to distribute a program without proper authority, tamper with its intended functionality, expose proprietary algorithms, and launch viruses/worms against identical applications on distributed hosts. When the attacker is a malicious insider, the challenge grows more complex because they may have decryption keys and are likely knowledgeable of auditing and detection capabilities. Therefore, to be successful, software protection mechanisms must be capable of defending against all methods of attack, including insider threats. During Phase I, Pikewerks drew upon the importance of diversity in application binaries to develop a prototype, ELECTRONIC ARMOR, that is capable of protecting software from various types of attacks. In Phase II, the prototype will be expanded and matured to include additional layers of polymorphic/metamorphic transformations, deception, and anti-tamper mechanisms that can be embedded within a binary. The product of Phase II will be a software security and digital rights management technology that can be successfully incorporated into both Government and commercial applications with minimal performance impact.

Principal Investigator:

Sandra Ring
Chief Scientist

Business Contact:

Sandra Ring
Small Business Information at Submission:

9 Forrest Street Alexandria, VA 22305

EIN/Tax ID: 331040567
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No