Risky Biz Soap Box: VMRay CEO Carsten Willems talks sandbox tech

Automated reversing isn't perfect, but we live in an imperfect world...
23 May 2019 » Risky Business

This is not the regular Risky Business weekly show, the Soap Box series of podcasts that run on Risky.Biz are wholly sponsored. Everyone you hear in Soap Box paid to be here.

With that disclaimer out of the way, this is actually a really interesting conversation. Carsten Willems is the co-founder and CEO of VMRay, a company that makes… well.. what do you call it? Is it an incident response tool? Is it a detection tool? Or is it just a good hypervisor-based sandbox that you can use to do both of those things?

I’m going to say it’s the third – VMRay is a company that makes a great hyper-visor sandbox and has applied that technology to both response and detection.

In an ideal world you’d have a team of malware reversers on staff pulling apart every single binary that looks shady. But this isn’t a perfect world, so that’s never going to happen. So the original use case that Carsten and his team set out to solve was around automating malware reversing. They build a hyper-visor based sandbox that’s very hard to bypass, you can run your standard build on it, throw binaries and documents at it and see what blows up. That’s really the primary use case here.

But there is a second use case, which is detection. VMRay can give you a pretty decent risk score on samples, and they’ve entered into a few OEM arrangements with vendors to provide that extra level of detection.

I’d never met Carsten Willems before we prepared this podcast, but it’s safe to say we hit it off. This podcast basically turned into Carsten telling his story, the story of where VMRay came from and where he wants it to go. Enjoy!