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Over on IT Security we fairly regularly get questions containing a believed-to-be malicious code snippet. The OP is usually a web-admin of some kind and has discovered the snippet on his server, and wants to know what exactly it does.

Some examples; here, here, and here

Is this type of question, given that it is essentially 'could you reverse engineer this for me and tell me what it does', on topic here? They often do involve packing and obfuscation techniques, not just plain readable source.

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I would vote that it should be on topic, yes. It's a core idea of reverse code engineering to understand code, binary or other.

So the question this would raise for me would be the ethical one. Should malicious code be out out in the open like that. Being a gray hat, I would also answer that with yes, because educating users (or in your scenario admins) is better than hiding stuff and making it privileged knowledge.

However, it's possible the SE staff has a particular opinion about this and there is a policy or so ...

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