Skip to content
Related Articles
Open in App
Not now

Related Articles

How To Find Rootkits On Your Computer?

Improve Article
Save Article
  • Difficulty Level : Easy
  • Last Updated : 07 Jan, 2023
Improve Article
Save Article

Rootkits are malicious computer software always hidden behind another program or file and as a result, detecting their presence is difficult. It provides access to a computer or an area of the software that otherwise is not easily accessible. Although some rootkits have legitimate uses including additional and user support, the majority of rootkits are malicious.


Rootkits unlock a backdoor in a victim’s system, allowing malicious software like keylogger programs, viruses, or ransomware to be installed for network security attacks. It is also capable of disabling antivirus software, endpoint security systems, and anti-malware to protect malicious software from being detected. Rootkits purchased on the dark web can be used in phishing attacks or social engineering to convince to install them on their computers, therefore, granting attackers administrative access to the device. Rootkits are implanted when naive users allow permissions to install rootkit software. Rootkits multiply in the same way as computer viruses like phishing emails, malicious executable files, fraudulently designed PDFs, and Microsoft Word documents.  


But nevertheless, there are multiple ways to detect and remove the rootkits.

The following warning indicators may indicate that your device is infected with the rootkit:

1. Unusual System Behavior

  • Hackers can make changes to a computer’s operating system, hence it may lead to changes to the normal performance of the operating system.
  • We have to be alert and look for suspicious device performance and functioning.

2. Changes in your settings

  • The device should not do anything unless the user commands it to. So if we observe the device doing anything on its own, it could be due to the rootkits present in our computer.
  • There are rootkits that are very smart and advanced. They are remotely monitored and change our system’s performance and functioning.
  • Look for additional programs running while booting a device.

3. Intermittent web page or network access

  • Internet access becomes patchier than usual. Look for such signs.
  • If a hacker uses a rootkit to make large transmissions through our computer, it may cause the computer’s internet connection to slow down.

4. Signature Scanning

  • For signature scanning, the computer deals with numbers.
  • A signature is a string of numbers that serve as a computer’s speak description for software.
  • Run a scan to check if there are any popups, which mean there are activities going on behind our back while we are using the computer or while another browser is open.

5. Memory Dump Analysis

  • If our computer system crashes, it creates a memory dump also known as a crash dump. An experienced and efficient expert would be able to detect the cause of the crash(whether a rootkit is behind it).

6. System Memory Search

  • We should check our device’s system memory regularly to check if anything is found to be suspicious 
  • Examine all access points for signs of rootkit activities.
  • Library operations imported from dynamic link libraries(DLLs) need special supervision, as some of them can be programmed to do other tasks while we are busy.


Step 1: Run rootkit removal software

Most rootkits can easily go around basic defenses. That is why you need to:

  • Employ sophisticated AI-based anti-malware software for total security.
  • Detect future attacks and eliminate existing rootkits.


Step 2: Run a boot time scan


  • Rootkits employ advanced tactics to avoid antivirus detection.
  • Rootkits have the capability to outsmart automatic antivirus checks.
  • While an antivirus scan is going on, it can fool the antivirus by diverting the data flow and opening a harmless file so that the antivirus thinks it’s safe.
  • Can alter a malware file’s identification code.

This is why a boot time scan is so important.    


Step 3: Wipe the device and reinstall your operating system

If rootkit removal software and boot time scan fails, we can consider 

  • backing up our data 
  • erase our devices and 
  • reinstall our operating system 

Step 4: Keep rootkits out of the system

But the simplest way to avoid such attacks is to bypass the attack altogether. Some measures include.

  • Avoid opening, downloading, or installing suspicious files.
  • Examine files before opening them.
  • We should not open links or files sent from an unknown sender. We should not open spam emails.
  • Purchase software only from trusted sources. 
  • Run system updates regularly for the computer to know about new trends of viruses and also so that new features are available on our computers. 
My Personal Notes arrow_drop_up
Related Articles

Start Your Coding Journey Now!