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What Is RootKit? Best Rootkit Removal Tools In 2019

What Is RootKit?

The "Rootkit" is defined as malicious computer software used by hackers to gain access to a computer or network. Rootkit installation might be automated or a hacker can install it after having obtained administration access. Although Rootkits on their own may not be harmful, they hide worms, keyloggers, & malware. Its also provide complete backdoor access to an attacker to steal files and data.
What Is RootKit? Everything About Rootkit
What Is RootKit? Everything About Rootkit


What Can a Rootkit Do?

Rootkit gives permission to the attacker to control over a system or network without the knowledge of the system user. Rootkit allows the compromised device to be used as a bot for DDOS attacks.

Once a rootkit has been installed in the system, the controller of the rootkit has the ability to remotely execute files and alter system configurations (such as firewall disabled) on the system.

How Do Rootkits Get installed and How it Works?

Rootkits depend on hidden methods to infect computer such as using infected disk or drive in the system. Rootkit might be pre-installed in a newly purchased computer.

Typically rootkits spread by hiding in software. When the user gives permission to the installer to install the software then rootkits install in the system with software. Once a rootkit installs in the system then it connects to the hacker's system. Now hacker can remotely access the system and also can control the system. Rootkit might contain malicious tools such as keylogger, password stealers, antivirus disablers, and bots for a DDOS attack.

Rootkits might be installed thorough crafted malicious PDF files, email phishing campaigns, executable malicious files, Word documents or downloading software infected with the rootkit from unsecured websites.

How to Detect a Rootkit & Symptoms of Rootkit?

Rootkit detection might be difficult because rootkits able to subvert that software who want to find the rootkit. For detecting a rootkit we using some methods such as signature scanningdifference scanning, behavioral-based methodmemory dump analysis, and alternative & trusted operating system.

One common symptom of the rootkit is antivirus not working or antivirus automatically disabled. Another symptom of rootkit is system settings automatically changed without user permission. Other symptoms of rootkit infection are slow internet, high CPU usage, slow system performance, and browser redirects.

Here is a comprehensive guide about rootkit detection methods:

Behavioral-based Method

The behavioral-based method for detecting rootkits attempts to guess the presence of a rootkit by looking for rootkit-like behavior. For instance, differences in the frequency of API calls or in CPU utilization can be alleged to a rootkit. The behavioral-based method is complex and it is not highly sure about rootkits.

Signature-based Detection Method

Antiviruses rarely capture all viruses in general scan but when a rootkit attempt to hide itself during an antivirus scan then stealth detector detects the rootkit who is trying to unload itself from the system. Signature-based detection methods can be effective but sometimes it can't detect custom-root rootkits.

Memory Dumps Analysis

Memory dumps store constant snapshots of the computer's volatile memory (RAM). By analyzing memory dumps, examiners can ensure a clean working environment and no active interrupt from the rootkit. This technique is highly specialized and may need access to non-public source code or debugging symbols.

Types of Rootkits

There are five types of rootkits and every rootkit infects the system in different ways. Here I define types of rootkit:

User-mode Rootkit & Application Rootkit (Ring 3) - User-mode is rootkit is easiest to implement and these rootkits run in ring 3 with other ordinary programs. User mode rootkit might modify the standard behavior of APIs.

Some User mode rootkits are injecting in a DLL (Dynamic Link Library) to spoof targeted processes. These rootkits usually focused to manipulate the standard functionality of DLL files. User mode rootkits easily detect by antiviruses but sometimes might be difficult to detect these rootkits.

Kernel-mode Rootkit (Ring 0) - Kernel-mode rootkit is designed to run with the high operating system (OS) privileges to modify the core functionality of the operating system. This type of rootkits is very difficult to detect because they work as a device driver to avoid detection by antivirus program.

Hackers can use Kernel-mode rootkits to modify codes of the core system and gain access to the system to steal private data.

Bootkits - Bootkits is the variant of Kernel-mode rootkit. Bootkits are designed to infect the startup code such as MBR (Master Boot Record), VBR (Volume Boot Record), and Boot sector, to encrypt the whole hard drive data of the targeted system. Bootkits are able to subvert the booting process to attack the system.

Hypervisor Level Rootkit (Ring 1) - Hypervisor Level Rootkits are designed for exploit hardware virtualization feature (Intel VT or AMD-V) to gain access in the system.

This type of rootkits hosts the targeted system as a virtual machine for enabling the rootkit to intercept hardware calls made by the original operating system. Hypervisor rootkits are difficult to detect but it can be detected by analyzing timing differences in CPU instructions.

Firmware and Hardware Rootkit - Firmware Rootkit is designed to use devices to create a malware image in hardware via a network card, hard drive, System BIOS, or router. These rootkits are hides themselves in firmware because the firmware is not normally inspected for code integrity.

Rootkit Protection & Preventions Of Rootkit

  • You can safeguard your system from rootkits by guaranteeing it's kept patched against known vulnerabilities. This includes patches of your operating system, applications, and up-to-date virus definitions.
  • Do not download files or open email file attachments from unknown sources. be careful when installing the software package and carefully read the end-user license agreements.
  • Static analysis can find backdoors and other malicious insertions like rootkits. Enterprise developers, as well as its departments buying ready-made software, will scan their applications to find threats including "hidden-credential" backdoors.

Rootkit Removal & Best Rootkit Removal Tools In 2019

Manually Remove the rootkit is too difficult for a normal computer user that's why security software vendors provide tools to detect and remove rootkits automatically. Rootkit removal tools also include in the latest antiviruses. Microsoft provides "Windows Defender" in windows for windows users and it can also remove rootkits. Here are many other vendors who provide rootkit removal tools but windows defender is a free tool provided by Microsoft. List of Rootkit Removal or Anti-Rootkit Tools:

Examples Of Popular Rootkits

  • Lane Davis and Steven Dake - rootkit in the early 1990s.
  • NTRootkit – First malicious rootkits targeted at Windows OS.
  • Machiavelli - First rootkit targeting Mac OS X appeared in 2009.
  • Greek wiretapping – in 2004/05, attackers installed a rootkit that targeted Ericsson's AXE PBX.
  • Zeus - Trojan horse that steals banking information by Man-in-the-browser keystroke logging.
  • Flame - a computer malware that attacks computers running Windows OS. It can record audio, screenshots, keyboard activity by the keylogger, and network traffic.

Additional Questions About Rootkits

Question -1. Can a Rootkit Be a Backdoor?
Answer -1. Backdoor is a way to access a computer without administrative permission and usually rootkit used to open a backdoor in the targeted system. So Yes, Rootkit can be a Backdoor or Rootkit can open a Backdoor.

Question -2. Is a Rootkit is a Trojan?
Answer -2. Sometimes Rootkit might be a Trojan. Here is an example of rootkit who is also a trojan, that rootkit known as Zeus. Zeus is a trojan horse that steals banking information by Man-in-the-browser keystroke logging.

Question -3. Can Rootkit Infect The BIOS?
Answer -3. Yes, Rootkit can infect the BIOS. A BIOS rootkit is programming that can activate remote administration. Originally, BIOS firmware was read-only but now some manufacturers normally use flash memory to store the BIOS that's why BIOS can be updated or replace remotely.

Question -4. Can Antivirus Detect Rootkits?
Answer -4. The latest antiviruses include rootkit detection and rootkit removal tools. So Yes, Antivirus can detect the rootkit.

If you want to ask more questions about Rootkits please write your questions in the comment section below. Thanks for reading this article about "Rootkits".
What Is RootKit? Best Rootkit Removal Tools In 2019 What Is RootKit? Best Rootkit Removal Tools In 2019 Reviewed by Technowap on January 10, 2019 Rating: 5

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