Malware is any software application which subverts the will of the legitimate owner of a computer, by means of force or subterfuge, with or without personal or monetary gain on the part of the creator.

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How secure are virtual machines really? False sense of security?

I was reading this CompTIA Security+ SYO-201 book, and the author David Prowse claims that: Whichever VM you select, the VM cannot cross the software boundaries set in place. For example, a ...
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10answers
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How do you explain the necessity of “nuke it from orbit” to management and users?

When a machine has been infected with malware, most of us here immediately identify the appropriate action as "nuke it from orbit" - i.e. wipe the system and start over. Unfortunately, this is often ...
53
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4answers
4k views

What security risks are posed by software vendors deploying SSL Intercepting proxies on user desktops (e.g. Superfish)

There has been quite a bit of concern noted relating to the recent discovery that Lenovo are pre-installing a piece of Adware (Superfish) which has the capability of intercepting SSL traffic from ...
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5answers
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Is it safe to install malware in a VM

Is it safe to install malware in virtual machines? I would like to investigate malware, but I don't want to infect my own computer. Can I install the malware in a VMWare VM, maybe even without ...
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3answers
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Mars Curiosity Rover Security

Does the software in the Mars Curiosity Rover have any security features built-in? I can't imagine how someone would hack into it, but if the rover does indeed have some protection against malicious ...
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4answers
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What cryptographic flaw was exploited by Flame, to get its code signed by Microsoft?

Today, Microsoft released a security advisory warning that the "Flame" malware exploited a weakness in a cryptographic algorithm used by Microsoft Terminal Server Licensing Service, and was thereby ...
39
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3answers
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How to detect if I am vulnerable to “Superfish,” and how to remove it?

The site has already a discussion of the security risks of "Superfish". It seems to me that anything that tampers with the bits of one's connection is bad. If it tampers with TLS connections, it is ...
38
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4answers
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Should I get an antivirus for Ubuntu?

Considering the recent thread regarding anti-virus for the Mac I wonder how many of the arguments put forth are relevant today to Linux systems, specifically Ubuntu. There are no known Ubuntu ...
35
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5answers
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Are there actions taken against websites that deliver malware?

There are serious tools and services such as Google Safe Browsing for malicious and phishing websites, and others fully dedicated to phishing websites such as Phishing.org. What is done against these ...
35
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2answers
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How secure is the Windows 8 included Anti Virus known as Windows Defender?

How secure is the new Windows 8 anti virus known as Windows Defender? Does it have a protection against malware which uses UAC bypass/process injection/rootkits/process persistence/running the binary ...
33
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4answers
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Why does malware periodically check google.com

I'm looking at some malware PCAPs, e.g. http://malware-traffic-analysis.net/2014/05/27/index.html . One of the things I've been seeing frequently is requests to alexa top million sites (e.g. yandex, ...
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6answers
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Can malware be dangerous even when quarantined?

I am reading a book on network security and when talking about user confusion it writes: "It is not uncommon for a user to be asked security questions such as Is it safe to quarantine this ...
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7answers
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Is making a clean install enough to remove potential malware?

Is formatting the disk and reinstalling the system from scratch (to Ubuntu) enough to remove any potential hidden software spyware, keyloggers etc.? Or can something still persist installed in the ...
29
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4answers
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Does a Virtual Machine stop malware from doing harm?

I would like to know if it is save for the host system of a virtual machine (VM - VirtualBox OSE in my case) to execute malware. Can a virus break out and read or write data from the host system? ...
27
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6answers
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How can normal files hide a virus?

How can normal files supported in the Windows operating system hide a virus? Sometimes opening a .txt , .jpg or .docx files leads to running a virus. How is this possible?
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5answers
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Why would malware try to remove other malware?

Recently my php-based website got infected with malware (probably by a stolen ftp password). Basically, every 30 minutes a file frame_cleaner_php.php was uploaded, a HTTP-GET was done on it to execute ...
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1answer
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What is an n-day security attack?

There are several attacks types in computer security. For instance, zero-day attacks consist of attacks that use undisclosed exploits. In contrast, what is an n-day attack? Is it a security concern?
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2answers
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Can you get virus just by visiting a website in Chrome?

I've recently read Google Chrome: The End of Drive-By Downloads. Is it true to say that drive-by-downloads are history in Google Chrome? So if I have a link (from a spam email) I can right-click >> ...
26
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3answers
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Malware that can survive BIOS re-flashing

The well-respected security consultant Dragos Ruiu is reporting that he has been infected with mysterious malware that can survive re-installation of the OS and re-flashing of the OS. In other words, ...
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3answers
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Stack Overflow is www.doioig.gov/? If not, then could I be infected

Great! I made a post recently where I mentioned that my system might be infected. Now something new came up. When I search for Stack Overflow on Google, I see that the URL is www.doioig.gov/. When I ...
22
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4answers
6k views

Are popular porn sites more likely to be infected with malware?

I'm trying to help my friend understand this because he believes that since a site is very popular, that it's less likely to infect its viewers because of its security! Is a popular site less likely ...
22
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3answers
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Linux-based Turla trojan

There are several articles describing the newly discovered Linux-based Turla trojan. But basically, all these articles repeat the same, very limited, information. Can anybody provide more details, ...
21
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6answers
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Why are vulnerabilities and lack of security possible in computers?

I have heard about computer vulnerabilities, virus, malware, etc. Why are these threats possible? Why doesn't the computer just do the things it is supposed to? Why do some people write malware, ...
21
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2answers
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Can a Trojan hide itself, so its activity doesn't appear in task manager process? [duplicate]

Can malicious software hide itself, so its activity doesn't appear in the list of processes from Task Manager? Can it hide itself so when someone is controlling your computer, even if you open Task ...
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2answers
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Cohen's problem

Fred Cohen determined theoritically that viral detetction is an undecidable problem. Can anyone provide an intuitive reasoning for that? Background Fred Cohen experimented with computer viruses ...
20
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8answers
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Best practices for handling computer viruses

I realize this question may be quite broad (and hopefully not a violation of the FAQs), but I'm interested in hearing how many of you handle a computer infected with Malware. In a small-to-medium ...
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2answers
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From a technical standpoint, how does the zero-day Internet Explorer vulnerability discovered in September 2012 work?

I'm looking for an answer that explains the issue from the prespective of a developer/engineer. What is exactly being exploited and why does it work? Please note that I am not looking for ...
20
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6answers
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Malicious Links that Respond to Browsers but not curl or wget

There are some emails with links to people's cracked websites with a malware download Like this kind of email: fake DHL pack station email ... the links often take the form of: http:// ...
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8answers
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PHP malware/shell keeps resurrecting [duplicate]

So I've been fighting this problem for months now and decided that it's beyond my limited (if at all) server skills, and that I need help from the pros. I have a VPS (with root access) which hosts ...
20
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4answers
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How to inject executable, malicious code into PDF, JPEG, MP3, etc.?

I wanted to know if its generally possible to inject executable code into files like PDFs or JPEGs etc., or must there be some kind of security hole in the application? And if so, how would one do ...
20
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3answers
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Can Windows malware harm a Linux computer when it's executed with Wine?

I am an (Ubuntu) Linux user. Sometimes, I have to use Wine for running Windows executables. I would like to know if Windows malware (virus, trojan, worm,...), i.e. malware that was not intended to ...
19
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4answers
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Reverse engineering malware/viruses

Assuming a machine has malware, regardless of how it got there, one thing I would like to learn to do is to take the binary file and reverse engineer it to see what the malware is doing/has already ...
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4answers
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Malwares source repositories. Where?

As the best way to learn is to read the code, do you know where I can find malware/virus/whatever source code to read?
19
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4answers
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Are anti-virus companies companies regularly committing software piracy?

As Mikko Hypponen highlighted in a recent tweet, anti-Virus companies collect and store both samples of malicious software and samples of legitimate software: This got me to thinking, what ...
18
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3answers
934 views

Are official browser add-ons really safe?

Almost any browser addon/extension that I install on my Chrome or Firefox (be it Firebug, RESTClient, ...) warns me, saying: It [the add-on] can: Access your data on all website Access ...
18
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4answers
627 views

Malware - are removal tools acceptable or is bare metal re-install the only safe option?

I see a number of companies offering "malware removal" services. I see some software that claims to be able to remove malware from an infected machine. Is using a removal software tool to 'clean' an ...
18
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5answers
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The Perfect Mousetrap - Can a sandbox system be designed such that it's identical to an actual computer? [duplicate]

In testing suspicious files for malware, the typical method is to search for known malicious code. This is why zero-day malware attacks can be so dangerous — their malicious code is previously unknown ...
18
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7answers
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Why do malware creators use such clever technologies for such silly purposes?

Some days ago I got infected by a malware, probably something new and very clever, as it went in unstopped and no scanning tool was able to detect it afterwards (see this question). It was a ...
17
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5answers
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Why would a virus writer bother to check to see if a machine is infected before infecting it?

I was looking at the tripartite structure of a virus, and it seems to check to see if a computer is infected before infecting it with the virus. Would this be an attempt to use files that are already ...
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6answers
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What are the security implications of people downloading addons, wrongly thinking that they are safe?

I recently learned about a plugin for Firefox called Fire Sheep, which was featured on the Security Now podcast. I downloaded F.S. and began examining it. To my surprise it includes C++ code that must ...
17
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7answers
891 views

How to deal with a person who gets easily fooled by internet and mail scams?

alternative title: How to deal with a person who has gotten paranoid and doesn't want to go online anymore? A person, who has over the years been scammed many times, by bad spam/fraud emails, and ...
17
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2answers
779 views

Is there a real possibility of getting malware by “drive-by”?

I know malware can be gotten by downloading and running stuff, but is there a real possibility of just viewing a webpage or clicking a link and getting one? Assuming using only Firefox / Chrome and ...
17
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6answers
3k views

Becoming a malware analyst?

So, I'm currently 16 and am considering a career in IT when I finish school. The thing that has intrigued me the most while growing up is malware. I've come across it so often and have often had to ...
17
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3answers
909 views

Why do rootkits hide in drivers?

A lot of rootkits for Windows (maybe even Linux?) do hide in drivers. Why is that? One reason I can think of is that using a driver they run in kernel mode and have full system access, but aren't ...
17
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4answers
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Can home routers get infected?

I am behind a router(linksys that runs dd wrt on it) and I was infected with sality. I'm curious, can my router get infected too? If yes, how can I remove the infection? I used the search bar but ...
16
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2answers
790 views

Could once infected machine be ever trusted again?

I'm just about to switch to a new SSD drive, so I figured it's a good occasion for a really, really fresh start. I reconsidered every installed piece of software, uninstalled lots of crap ...
15
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6answers
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How do I safely inspect a suspicious email attachment?

I received a pretty blatantly spammy email to my Gmail account. I'm not really sure how it made it through the spam filters, since it has all of the telltale signs. The FROM field is spoofed as ...
15
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3answers
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Do I really need an Anti-Virus software if I'm careful about where I browse?

A friend told to me the following: I don't use Anti-Virus software at all, I am just careful about where I go and what I click on. I've also heard this from other people as I've repaired their ...
15
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3answers
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URL Shortening - How to verify if it is a non-malicious URL?

Again, I must mention that I have just started to learn about security. So, please bear with my newbie questions. If I receive a shortened URL from somewhere, say in an my-email or in a social media ...
15
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3answers
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Recommendations for honeypot software

A couple of us wanted to setup a honeypot/honeynet with the goal of learning; not planned to be in a production environment. What's a good recommendation for a high interaction or low interaction ...