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Process-level virtual machine (PVM) based code obfuscation is a viable means for protecting software against runtime code tampering and unauthorized code reverse engineering. PVM-based approaches rely on a VM to determine how instructions of the protected code region are scheduled and executed. Therefore, it is crucial to protect the VM against runtime code tampering that alters the instructions and behavior of the VM. This paper presents VMGuards, a novel PVM-based code protection system thatdoi:10.3390/app8050771 fatcat:v4j4rzjdnrdo7glpwsbeepvv5y