If an organization discovers or suspects that some malware may have gotten into its systems, ProCheckUp's response team may wish to perform malware analysis on any potential samples that are discovered during the investigation process to determine if they are malware and, if so, what impact that malware might have on the systems within the target organizations' environment.

Malware analysis is the study or process of determining the functionality, origin and potential impact of a given malware sample such as a virus, worm, trojan horse, rootkit, or backdoor. Malware or malicious software is any computer software intended to harm the host operating system or to steal sensitive data from users, organizations or companies. Malware may include software that gathers user information without permission.

The method by which malware analysis is performed typically falls under one of two types:

Static malware analysis

Static or Code Analysis is usually performed by dissecting the different resources of the binary file without executing it and studying each component. The binary file can also be disassembled (or reverse engineered) using a disassembler such as IDA. The machine code can sometimes be translated into assembly code which can be read and understood by humans: the malware analyst can then make sense of the assembly instructions and have an image of what the program is supposed to perform. Some modern malware is authored using evasive techniques to defeat this type of analysis, for example by embedding syntactic code errors that will confuse disassemblers but that will still function during actual execution.

Dynamic malware analysis

Dynamic or Behavioural analysis is performed by observing the behaviour of the malware while it is running on a host system. This form of analysis is often performed in a sandbox environment to prevent the malware from infecting production systems; many such sandboxes are virtual systems that can easily be rolled back to a clean state after the analysis is complete. The malware may also be debugged while running using a debugger such as GDB or WinDbg to watch the behaviour and effects on the host system of the malware step by step while its instructions are being processed. Modern malware can exhibit a wide variety of evasive techniques designed to defeat dynamic analysis including testing for virtual environments or active debuggers, delaying execution of malicious payloads, or requiring some form of interactive user input.

Please contact us for more information on how ProCheckUp Malware Reverse Engineering Services can help you.

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