HIKOS - Highly Secure, Intelligent Software Copy-Protection
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Software piracy, which includes reproducing and distributing software products illegaly and without authorization, continues to cause financial losses to software vendors. Dongles for hardware protection have been present for a while now, but unfortunately, most of these solutions were only effective for a short period, until these methods were circumvented and time has showed that solutions that offer full protection from this phenomenon are impossible. In this project, we focus on a hardware copy protection scheme based on dongles and we take the current state-of-the-art in this area to a higher level. We provide a Highly Secure Software Copy Protection scheme and our contribution consists of the ability of the dongle to execute a selected part of the software inside the trusted environment in a dongle. This way, an attacker will never have the full software available on the host, which makes reverse-engineering of it more difficult. Additionaly, I provide a threat model and security analysis for this mechanism. Finally, I attach parts of some algorithms I created for the Code Preprocessing, Analysis and Extraction.