Analysis oF exception-based control transfers

Babak Yadegari, Jon Stephens, Saumya K Debray

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

5 Scopus citations


Dynamic taint analysis and symbolic execution find many important applications in security-related program analyses. However, current techniques for such analyses do not take proper account of control transfers due to exceptions. As a result, they can fail to account for implicit ows arising from exception-based control transfers, leading to loss of precision and potential false negatives in analysis results. While the idea of using exceptions for obfuscating (unconditional) control transfers is well known, we are not aware of any prior work discussing the use of exceptions to implement condi-Tional control transfers and implicit information ows. This paper demonstrates the problems that can arise in existing dynamic taint analysis and symbolic execution systems due to exception-based implicit information ows and proposes a generic architecture-Agnostic solution for reasoning about the behavior of code using user-defined exception handlers. Experimental results from a prototype implementation indicate that the ideas described produce better results than current state-of-The-Art systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCODASPY 2017 - Proceedings of the 7th ACM Conference on Data and Application Security and Privacy
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781450345231
StatePublished - Mar 22 2017
Event7th ACM Conference on Data and Application Security and Privacy, CODASPY 2017 - Scottsdale, United States
Duration: Mar 22 2017Mar 24 2017


Other7th ACM Conference on Data and Application Security and Privacy, CODASPY 2017
CountryUnited States


  • Binary analysis
  • Dynamic information flow
  • Symbolic execution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Information Systems
  • Software

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