FEAST 2016 will be held in conjunction with the 23rd ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security (CCS) on 28 October 2016.  The workshop is geared toward discussion and understanding of several critical topics surrounding software executable transformation for improving the security and efficiency of all software used in security-critical applications.  The scope of discussion for this workshop will include topics that may be necessary to fully exploit the power and impact of late-stage software customization efforts as described in the Call for Talks.


Software size and complexity has been steadily increasing over time.  Much of this increase results from the negative side effects of modern software development methods and practices, which involve excessive use of indirection and abstraction.  Over-generalization of included functionality (i.e., one size fits all) and feature creep further exacerbate the situation.  These excesses impact performance and security by introducing inefficiency as well as extraneous attack surface.  Recent efforts focusing on “efficient and timely software” have been able to reclaim software execution efficiency by reducing indirection, by performing automatic program de-layering, and by program specialization (de-bloating).  Despite some early progress within the research community, however, software executable transformation is not a solved science.  A critical step in the process, reverse engineering and binary understanding, is generally undecidable.  This workshop will address various automated tools (an ecosystem of tools) that need to be investigated and developed by the community to guarantee the effectiveness and correctness of transformation efforts, better understand its limitations, and to enhance and ensure the security of transformed software.