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Reverse Engineering Course - Master the art of software analysis

Explore the mysteries of Reverse Engineering with our comprehensive course. Discover the art of decoding and analyzing the inner workings of software. Immerse yourself in a world of computer secrets and learn advanced disassembly and code analysis techniques.

60 minutes

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Contents

Software Reverse Engineering (SRE) is the process of discovering the technological principles of a device, object or system by analyzing its structure, functions and operation. In simple terms, this means studying and analyzing a system to deduce its inner workings.

📍 Perimeter

The field of reverse engineering is applied in :

  • Mechanical engineering at the outset
  • Electronics, for example, to reconstitute the assembly code of firmware, reconstitute the functional diagram from its connection points, interfaces, etc.
  • Computer science using a disassembler and decompiler
  • Food processing...

We'll be focusing on reverse engineering in the field of IT.

 

This reverse engineering can be carried out during a static analysis, without stimuli, when no process is running, or during a dynamic analysis, with stimuli, with the system running or when a process is running.

Reverse engineering helps:

  • In IT security to search for vulnerabilities in binaries and analyze malware
  • When the source code has unfortunately been lost or is no longer available, and you want to make changes to it
  • To improve software quality (reversal of the development process to understand the internal architecture, its structure and operating mode, with possible corrections).
  • To develop new products from existing code
  • To analyze competitors' products
  • To document software with little or no documentation
  • For challenges during CTF (Capture the Flag) sessions or SOC Battles (SOC personnel) during typical root me competitions, ...

 

The processes involved in obtaining the final object from the software source code, i.e. Engineering vs Reverse Engineering, are shown in the following diagram:

reverse engineering

⚽ Objective

Software reconstitution generally aims to :

  • reconstitution of source code via a decompiler to reverse the translation process from machine language to source language, or via a disassembler that translates machine instruction code (an executable file) into assembly language
  • Create a new model of the source code to document, amend and modify it, using a modeling language such as UML (Unified Modeling Language).
  • Understand the inner workings of a communications protocol using network sniffer software to access the rules that govern it.

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Reverse engineering is the process of analyzing and understanding an existing product or system to determine its inner workings, structure and mechanisms. In the field of cybersecurity, it is often used to examine software, protocols or devices to discover vulnerabilities or understand their behavior.

Reverse engineering is used in cybersecurity for a variety of reasons. It is used to understand how malware works, in order to develop countermeasures and detection signatures. It is also used to analyze protocols and systems to identify security flaws and vulnerabilities, enabling professionals to enhance system security.

The reverse engineering process generally comprises the following stages: acquisition of the binary or system to be analyzed, disassembly of the code into lower-level languages, static analysis of the code to understand its structure and logic, dynamic analysis to observe the program's behavior during execution, and finally, documentation of the results obtained.

There are many popular tools used in reverse engineering, such as IDA Pro, Ghidra, OllyDbg, radare2, Hopper, and x64dbg. These tools provide features such as disassembly, decompilation, debugging and dynamic analysis to facilitate the reverse engineering process.

Reverse engineering requires a solid understanding of processor architectures, operating systems, programming languages and low-level concepts. Mastery of programming languages such as C/C++ and assembly is also required. In addition, a good knowledge of IT security concepts is essential to identify potential vulnerabilities.

In many countries, reverse engineering is considered a legal practice when carried out within a legitimate framework, such as in the field of cybersecurity. However, it is important to respect the laws and regulations specific to each jurisdiction, particularly with regard to copyright and software licenses.

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