Malware Reverse Engineering Handbook

Malware is a growing threat which causes considerable cost to individuals, companies and institutions. Since basic signature-based antivirus defences are not very useful against recently emerged malware threats or APT attacks, it is essential for an investigator to have the fundamental skill set in order to analyse and mitigate these threats.

This handbook by CCDCOE Technology Branch researchers gives an overview of how to analyse malware executables that are targeting the Windows platform. The authors are presenting the most common techniques used in malware investigation including set up of LAB environment, network analysis, behavioural analysis, static and dynamic code analysis. The reader will become familiar with disassemblers, debuggers, sandboxes, system and network monitoring tools. Incident response and collaboration tools are also introduced.

Advanced techniques are out of the scope of this handbook as it can be considered as the first steps in investigating and dealing with malware.

This research paper is an independent product of the CCDCOE and does not represent the official policy or position of NATO or any of the CCDCOE´s Sponsoring Nations. The NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (NATO CCDCOE) is a NATO-accredited knowledge hub, research institution, and training and exercise facility. The Tallinn-based international military organisation focuses on interdisciplinary applied research, as well as consultations, training and exercises in the field of cyber security.

Keywords: malware, debugger, IDAPro, static, dynamic, collaboration

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