Categories
Mobile Protection

Your Phone Can Be a Very Scary Place

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Mobile apps are changing our social, cultural, and economic landscapes – and, with the many opportunities and perks that these changes promise, come an equally impressive collection of risks and potential exploits.

Categories
Mobile Protection

PreEmptive Extends Free Access to Dotfuscator for WP7 Plus New WP8/WinRT Plans

Reading Time: 3 minutes

PreEmptive Solutions is pleased to announce our extended support for Windows Phone and WinRT apps. The specifics are as follows: 

Dotfuscator for Windows Phone 7: PreEmptive Solutions will be extending complimentary access to Dotfuscator for Windows Phone 7 through April, 2013. This means that existing users will continue to have access to world-class obfuscation for their WP7 apps; also, new users will continue to have complimentary access as well. 

Dotfuscator Professional: Dotfuscator Professional currently supports obfuscation for Windows Phone 7 (WP7), Windows Phone 8 (WP8) and WinRT. The professional SKU will soon include the injection of application instrumentation for WP8 and WinRT as well (WP7 is already supported). This professional SKU also supports all flavors and versions of the .NET Framework beyond mobile including Windows 8.

Announcement Dotfuscator for Windows Phone and WinRT: This new version of Dotfuscator will be available in early 2013 and will support all modern surfaces including WP7, WP8 and WinRT apps. 

Special pricing: This WP/WinRT version of Dotfuscator, let’s call it Dotfuscator WW for now, will be offered in two ways; one for the individual hobbyist or “moonlighter” and another for development teams requiring higher levels of support and more flexible deployment options. In both cases, pricing will be set at a significantly lower price point as compared to our standard Professional SKU (due to the unique nature of this “consumer-focused” market as well as the limited functionality of the Dotfuscator WW SKU, e.g. it only operates on WinRT and Windows Phone apps). 

Conclusion For those developers targeting Windows Phone 7 – you are all set through April 2013. Look for Dotfuscator for WinRT and Windows Phone in 2013 that offers IP protection across all of Microsoft’s modern surfaces priced to accommodate the “modern developer.” Can’t wait to protect your WP8 or WinRT code? Contact us at sales@preemptive.com and I’m sure we will be able to work something out. 

FAQ: 

Will my Dotfuscator for WP7 expire at the end of 2012? No – it will expire on 4/30/2013. 

If I am targeting WP7 and obfuscating with Dotfuscator WP7, will my app run on a WP8 phone? Yes! 

When will Dotfuscator for WP and WINRT be available? We are not committing to a specific date at this time, but the date will be well before the expiry of Dotfuscator for WP7 – developers will have plenty of time to make the transition if they so desire. 

Is there any support for Windows Phone 8 or WinRT today? Yes, Dotfuscator Professional supports these and all other .NET flavors. For pricing and availability, you can contact sales@preemptive.com. 

Will there be a free version of Dotfuscator for Windows Phone after 4/30/2013? Only Dotfuscator Community Edition (CE) included with Visual Studio will be free after 4/30/2013. Dotfuscator CE 2012 (the version embedded inside Visual Studio 2012) can obfuscate Windows Phone assemblies, but it cannot automatically consume XAP files and so there are additional steps required to make this work. Dotfuscator CE 2012 cannot obfuscate WinRT apps at all. 

What about instrumentation and exception monitoring? There has been no complimentary access to PreEmptive’s Runtime Intelligence Service since Microsoft discontinued its funding for the Windows Phone development community. However, if a developer injects exception monitoring specifically (versus feature tracking) via Dotfuscator, developers can now take advantage of PreEmptive Analytics for TFS that is included as a part of Visual Studio and TFS 2012. If you don’t already use TFS, check with Microsoft as they have a number of very attractive campaigns to make TFS available at no cost to small development teams. Of course, for a subscription fee, PreEmptive Solutions supports session, feature, user and exception monitoring and analytics across all .NET runtimes and devices as well as JavaScript, C++, Java and Android. For more information on PreEmptive Analytics, visit www.preemptive.com/pa 

Will Dotfuscator for WinRT and Windows Phone be able to obfuscate or instrument other .NET applications? No. The full Dotfuscator Professional will be required. 

What is the difference between a development team license and a hobbyist license? The final details have not been published yet, but the distinction should be fairly intuitive; if you are developing an app on your own or even with a few buddies to see if you can make a mark in this new and exciting world of modern apps – and you’re doing this outside of your “day job” – you are most definitely a hobbyist – no matter how successful your work may be – and we hope it is wildly successful. If you’re building an app for your employer – then you’re going to require a development team option (and you’re going to want it too for your own requirements). We will of course be crystal clear on all of this as we officially release Dotfuscator WW and, as always, if you have any immediate questions on this, email sales@preemptive.com and someone will get back to you promptly.

Categories
Mobile Protection

You can’t see me, I’m obfuscating (on Windows Phone)

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Recent communications from Microsoft have resulted in a wave of interest (to put it mildly) in obfuscation. Obfuscation is not new; nor are most of the questions, concerns, and critiques that have started flying around the WP7 dev community – but some are (because there are some unique aspects to the wp7 environment).

Categories
Mobile Protection

Biting the hand in the gift horse’s mouth

Reading Time: 2 minutes

I have been watching the growing “outrage” around the WP7 app reverse engineering controversy; outrage wrapped with an unmistakable implication that Microsoft has somehow dropped a ball and is trying to cover-up by recommending obfuscation to mitigate any risks. 

I know that I have written that good developers should act like babies, but let’s take a reality check here.

Categories
Mobile Protection

A phone by any other ‘nym is just as slick

Reading Time: < 1 minute

(…or, are smartphones also people too?)

One of my favorite words is retronym. A retronym is a new name for an existing (old) thing that becomes necessary because of progress. (what!?) Examples help – the term “acoustic guitar” was only necessary when electric guitars hit the scene. The term black and white TV was not born with the invention of TV – it was born with the invention of color TV.