GrammaTech Announces Static Analysis Tool for Examining Binaries

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CodeSonar® for Binaries Identifies Security Vulnerabilities in Third-Party Executables, Enabling Better Supply Chain Risk Management (SCRM)

ITHACA, NY — GrammaTech, Inc., a leading manufacturer of software-analysis tools, today announced a groundbreaking static-analysis tool for analyzing binary libraries and executables. CodeSonar for Binaries enables users to examine software for security vulnerabilities and malicious code, without the need for source code. Because the technology does not rely on debug or symbol-table information, it can examine the stripped executables normally shipped by software vendors. As a result, users can use CodeSonar for Binaries to perform a security analysis on software without any cooperation from the vendor.

“While many software-analysis tools exist, nearly all require source code. Yet end users seldom have access to the source code. CodeSonar for Binaries empowers end users by enabling them to perform a security audit on executables,” said Mark Zarins, VP of Sales and Marketing at GrammaTech. “It analyzes the software that users actually run – the specific machine code to be run on the processor. As a result, CodeSonar for Binaries can detect problems introduced not only by programmers, but also by the compiler and other tools in the development chain.”The analysis engine is the result of a 10-year collaboration between GrammaTech and the University of Wisconsin-Madison, involving 21 experts in program analysis and $15 million in R&D. As GrammaTech increased its R&D spending, several key researchers at the University of Wisconsin joined the company. The innovative technology has received prestigious awards at Computer Science conferences.

Market research firm Gartner predicts that “By 2017, IT supply chain integrity will be identified as a top three security-related concern by Global 2000 IT leaders.” Gartner’s October 2012 report entitled, “Living in a World Without Trust: When IT’s Supply Chain Integrity and Online Infrastructure Get Pwned,” outlines the impact of, and extent to which IT supply chains will be under attack and impaired in the future. According to Gartner, “The use of contaminated software in the creation of a finished software offering, whether inadvertent or intentional, is conceptually no different than the use of contaminated meat to create hamburgers. Both result in a final product that is compromised from creation.”

“Disassembly tools have been available for analyzing binaries, but analyzing low-level machine code manually, or even with scripts, is extremely time consuming and not really a scalable approach to identifying vulnerabilities,” said Paul Anderson, VP of Engineering at GrammaTech. “CodeSonar for Binaries makes it easy to examine large executables rapidly. Furthermore, the tool is fully integrated with GrammaTech’s source-code analysis technology, allowing customers to analyze projects that are a combination of source and binary code.”


CodeSonar for Binaries is currently being used by early adopters at a number of organizations. Parties interested in the tool should contact GrammaTech. More information about CodeSonar for Binaries is available here.

About GrammaTech

GrammaTech’s static-analysis tools are used worldwide by Fortune 500 companies, educational institutions, startups, and government agencies. Our customers create software for mission-critical applications. Since its inception as a spin-off of Cornell University, GrammaTech has focused on providing static analysis for applications where reliability and security are paramount. The staff includes 16 PhD-level experts, including world-renowned experts in the field of binary analysis, and a superb engineering team, all focused on creating the most innovative and in-depth analysis algorithms. The company’s flagship product, CodeSonar, is a sophisticated static-analysis tool that performs a whole-program, interprocedural analysis on both source code and binaries, and identifies complex programming bugs that can result in serious reliability or security problems.

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