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Chen, Shang-Tse, Han, YuFei, Chau, Duen Horng, Gates, Christopher, Hart, Michael, Roundy, Kevin A..  2017.  Predicting Cyber Threats with Virtual Security Products. Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Computer Security Applications Conference. :189–199.

Cybersecurity analysts are often presented suspicious machine activity that does not conclusively indicate compromise, resulting in undetected incidents or costly investigations into the most appropriate remediation actions. There are many reasons for this: deficiencies in the number and quality of security products that are deployed, poor configuration of those security products, and incomplete reporting of product-security telemetry. Managed Security Service Providers (MSSP's), which are tasked with detecting security incidents on behalf of multiple customers, are confronted with these data quality issues, but also possess a wealth of cross-product security data that enables innovative solutions. We use MSSP data to develop Virtual Product, which addresses the aforementioned data challenges by predicting what security events would have been triggered by a security product if it had been present. This benefits the analysts by providing more context into existing security incidents (albeit probabilistic) and by making questionable security incidents more conclusive. We achieve up to 99% AUC in predicting the incidents that some products would have detected had they been present.

Alabdulmohsin, Ibrahim, Han, YuFei, Shen, Yun, Zhang, XiangLiang.  2016.  Content-Agnostic Malware Detection in Heterogeneous Malicious Distribution Graph. Proceedings of the 25th ACM International on Conference on Information and Knowledge Management. :2395–2400.

Malware detection has been widely studied by analysing either file dropping relationships or characteristics of the file distribution network. This paper, for the first time, studies a global heterogeneous malware delivery graph fusing file dropping relationship and the topology of the file distribution network. The integration offers a unique ability of structuring the end-to-end distribution relationship. However, it brings large heterogeneous graphs to analysis. In our study, an average daily generated graph has more than 4 million edges and 2.7 million nodes that differ in type, such as IPs, URLs, and files. We propose a novel Bayesian label propagation model to unify the multi-source information, including content-agnostic features of different node types and topological information of the heterogeneous network. Our approach does not need to examine the source codes nor inspect the dynamic behaviours of a binary. Instead, it estimates the maliciousness of a given file through a semi-supervised label propagation procedure, which has a linear time complexity w.r.t. the number of nodes and edges. The evaluation on 567 million real-world download events validates that our proposed approach efficiently detects malware with a high accuracy.

Han, YuFei, Shen, Yun.  2016.  Accurate Spear Phishing Campaign Attribution and Early Detection. Proceedings of the 31st Annual ACM Symposium on Applied Computing. :2079–2086.

There is growing evidence that spear phishing campaigns are increasingly pervasive, sophisticated, and remain the starting points of more advanced attacks. Current campaign identification and attribution process heavily relies on manual efforts and is inefficient in gathering intelligence in a timely manner. It is ideal that we can automatically attribute spear phishing emails to known campaigns and achieve early detection of new campaigns using limited labelled emails as the seeds. In this paper, we introduce four categories of email profiling features that capture various characteristics of spear phishing emails. Building on these features, we implement and evaluate an affinity graph based semi-supervised learning model for campaign attribution and detection. We demonstrate that our system, using only 25 labelled emails, achieves 0.9 F1 score with a 0.01 false positive rate in known campaign attribution, and is able to detect previously unknown spear phishing campaigns, achieving 100% 'darkmoon', over 97% of 'samkams' and 91% of 'bisrala' campaign detection using 246 labelled emails in our experiments.