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Product Data Sheet
GuardIT® for
Intelligent Software Protection
Java offers an efficient framework for developing and
deploying enterprise and server or client-side applications. However, being a interpreted language, its
bytecode contains highly detailed metadata that makes
compiled applications easy to reverse engineer, tamper
and pirate. Once Java applications are deployed, hackers
and competitors have easy access to the source code and the embedded intellectual property (IP)
within the applications themselves. For example, IP and personally identifiable information (PII)
that is embedded in Java applications is susceptible to theft via reverse engineering. Furthermore,
malware has traveled up the stack to the application layer. Hence, enterprises are seeing an increasing need to protect applications against many forms of tampering. Today’s threat environment
requires resilient software protection solutions that reside at the application layer to ensure
against IP theft, malware invasion and/or unauthorized access.
Arxan Protects
• Brand
• Revenue
• Data
• Code Integrity
• Intellectual
Arxan Prevents
• Malware Injection
• Tampering with
Security Controls
or Sensitive
• Reverse-Engineering
• Unauthorized
Access and Fraud
• IP Theft and Piracy
Java Mobile Applications Require Protection
For Java mobile applications, the recommended method for most mobile developers targeting Android devices is to write native apps using
Java and the Android SDK. Attackers typically tamper with a compiled application. Compiled Java programs are composed of bytecode, an
intermediate language that is interpreted and translated to machine code by the Java Virtual Machine (JVM). Bytecode consists of a relatively
simple instruction set, contains much more metadata than machine code, and translates directly from Java. It is not optimized, contains symbol names and types, clearly demarks boundaries between methods, separates code from data, and contains debug information. All of this
makes decompiling Java programs relatively easy. Numerous Java decompilers and other tools are available to attackers for free or little cost.
Consequently, Java programs are particularly vulnerable to tampering.
Java Code Vulnerabilities Include:
• Reverse engineering
• Attackers can reverse engineer a bytecode file and decompile the code
after it is downloaded to the client. This enables IP theft as well as reverse
engineering of security routines or other critical routines that can be
found and exploited.
• Bypass critical routines
• Attackers can patch thick client binaries to bypass authentication logic or
exploit restricted functionality contained in your client code. This enables
attacks on your server.
• Key and credential theft
• Often secret keys or authentication credentials are hard coded into components. These are quite simple to identify, and can
then be abused to launch attacks on your server.
• Easy decompilation
• As a interpreted language, Java is very easy to decompile. A number of free and low-cost Java decompilers are widely available and
automatically process bytecode to produce amazingly readable source code. Hackers can quickly decompile your bytecode, modify it to
implement hacks or create counterfeits, and recompile – resulting in a hacked version of your original application.
Product Data Sheet
GuardIT® for
Automated Software Protection with GuardIT
GuardIT® is a proven commercial software protection solution for both interpreted and native code. It actively detect,
reacts and alerts against attempted application attacks, providing durable and resilient security to today’s threat profiles
which can easily bypass security protocols.
Arxan’s GuardIT protects critical functions of an application by combining advanced encryption and obfuscation with
Guards that are manipulating the bytecode. GuardIT for Java is based on patented technology that features various
advanced obfuscation techniques, and is part of the GuardIT family of products. The creation of a customized GuardSpec
guides the insertion of various layers of protection for your IP.
GuardIT for Java - Core Features
Many Java obfuscation solutions largely rely on string encryption and variable renaming to prevent comprehension
of disassembled code. However, in today’s sophisticated threat environment, such superficial measures are easily
circumvented, giving rise to the myth that Java cannot be secured. In contrast, Arxan’s GuardIT for Java provides
protection deep within the class file to durably secure Java bytecode. Technologies used by our protection
framework to prevent reverse-engineering, tampering and decompilation attacks include:
Arsenal of
GuardIT leverages
thousands of guard instances, of many types,
to comprehensively
safeguard your software
applications against
tampering, piracy and
any manner of theft.
Class of Defense
Guard Type
Transforms program instructions into code that is difficult to
disassemble and understand, but has the same functionality as the
String Encryption
Encrypts string literals and decryption at run-time
Renames the symbols in the protected application to nonsense
Resource Encryption
Allows the user to encrypt and decrypt at runtime a variety of assets
(shard objects, manifest.xml files, expansion files, etc.) in the android
Debug Info
Strips debugging information from Java class files. This prevents the
attackers from using debugging information to reverse-engineer a
Class Encryption
Encrypts target class files. It transforms Java class files to an obscure
format, which is unreadable by machine or human, to prevent a
program from being decompiled and to defend it against tamperin
Call Hiding
Uses Java reflection to hide method calls
Detects whether a program has been modified by computing a
checksum within a specified range
Debugger Detection
Detects whether the program is executing in a debugging
Resource Verification
Verifies resource files or shared library in the APK, at run-time, have
not been altered or tampered
Hook Detection
Detects whether an attacker has overridden a called function that
resides in a system library or within the application
Root Detection
Determines whether the device on which the application is running
is rooted
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