20 Malware Analysis Interview Questions and Answers

Prepare for the types of questions you are likely to be asked when interviewing for a position where Malware Analysis will be used.

Malware analysis is the process of identifying, understanding and responding to malicious software. As the number of cyber attacks increases, so does the demand for malware analysts. If you are interviewing for a position in malware analysis, it is important to be prepared to answer questions about your experience and skills. This article discusses the most common questions asked in a malware analysis interview and how to answer them.

Malware Analysis Interview Questions and Answers

Here are 20 commonly asked Malware Analysis interview questions and answers to prepare you for your interview:

1. What is malware?

Malware is a type of software that is designed to damage or disable computers and computer systems. Malware can be used to steal personal information, destroy data, or take control of a computer.

2. Can you explain the difference between a virus, worm, and Trojan horse?

A virus is a type of malware that is able to replicate itself and spread to other computers. A worm is a type of malware that is able to spread itself without the need to attach to other programs or files. A Trojan horse is a type of malware that is disguised as a legitimate program or file in order to trick users into downloading and installing it.

3. Why would anyone want to analyze malware in the first place?

There are a few reasons. One is to understand how the malware works and what it does. This can help in developing defenses against it. Another is to track down the people who created the malware, which can be useful for law enforcement. Finally, some people do it just for the challenge.

4. Can you give me some examples of real-world computer viruses or malicious software?

Some examples of real-world computer viruses or malicious software include the following:

-The WannaCry ransomware attack which hit in May of 2017 and encrypted data on computers running the Microsoft Windows operating system, demanding a ransom payment in order to decrypt the data.

-The Petya/NotPetya malware attack which hit in June of 2017 and primarily targeted Ukraine, encrypting data on computers running the Microsoft Windows operating system and rendering them unusable.

-The Stuxnet worm which was discovered in 2010 and is believed to have been created by the United States and Israel in order to sabotage Iran’s nuclear program by causing physical damage to centrifuges used in uranium enrichment.

5. Is it possible for an antivirus program to get infected by a virus? If yes, how can this be prevented?

Yes, it is possible for an antivirus program to get infected by a virus. This can happen if the antivirus program is not updated frequently enough, or if it is not configured properly. To prevent this from happening, it is important to keep your antivirus program up to date and to run it with the most recent definitions.

6. How does a network analyzer work?

A network analyzer is a piece of software that is used to monitor and analyze network traffic. This can be useful for troubleshooting network issues, or for security purposes. Network analyzers work by capturing network traffic and then displaying it in a format that is easy to read and understand.

7. Is there any way to prevent malware from infecting a computer system?

There are a few ways to prevent malware from infecting a computer system. One way is to keep the operating system and all software up to date with the latest security patches. Another way is to use a good antivirus program and to keep it up to date. Finally, it is important to be careful about what you download and install on your computer, as well as what websites you visit.

8. What are some common techniques used to extract information from malware samples?

Some common techniques used to extract information from malware samples include reverse engineering, static analysis, and dynamic analysis. Reverse engineering involves looking at the code of a malware sample to understand how it works. Static analysis involves analyzing the code without running it, in order to understand what it does. Dynamic analysis involves running the code in a controlled environment in order to observe its behavior.

9. What is reverse engineering?

Reverse engineering is the process of taking something apart in order to figure out how it works. This can be done with software, hardware, or anything else that has a complex structure. When reverse engineering malware, the goal is to understand how the malware works in order to figure out how to stop it or remove it.

10. Are there any legal implications when analyzing malware?

There are a few legal implications to consider when analyzing malware. The first is that in order to analyze the malware, you will need to obtain a copy of it, which could potentially be illegal depending on the country you are in and the laws in place. Additionally, you could be held liable if you were to accidentally infect a computer with the malware while analyzing it. Finally, if you were to share your findings with someone else, you could be held liable if they used that information to commit a crime.

11. What do you understand about polymorphism in context with malware analysis?

Polymorphism is a technique that malware authors use to make their malware more difficult to detect and analyze. By changing the code of the malware slightly each time it is run, or by encrypting it in different ways, the malware can avoid detection by signature-based detection systems. This makes it more difficult for analysts to understand how the malware works, and makes it more likely to slip past security defenses.

12. How can you detect the presence of a rootkit on a computer?

Rootkits are a type of malware that can be difficult to detect because they are designed to hide themselves from normal detection methods. One way to try to detect a rootkit is to use a tool that can scan for hidden files and processes. Another way to look for signs of a rootkit is to check for unusual activity in the system logs.

13. What’s your understanding of steganography? How might it be useful in the context of malware analysis?

Steganography is the practice of hiding information in plain sight, and it can be used for a variety of purposes. In the context of malware analysis, steganography can be used to hide malicious code inside of otherwise innocuous-looking files. This can make it difficult for malware analysts to detect the presence of malware, as they may not be looking for it in the first place.

14. What is sandboxing?

Sandboxing is a security measure that involves isolating a piece of software, such as an app, so that it can run without affecting the rest of the system. This isolation can help to prevent malware from infecting the rest of the system, as well as to contain any damage that the malware may cause.

15. What are some of the most common ways that hackers use social engineering to spread malware?

One of the most common ways that hackers use social engineering to spread malware is by sending out phishing emails. These emails may look like they are from a legitimate source, but they actually contain malicious links or attachments. Other ways that hackers use social engineering to spread malware include creating fake websites that look like legitimate ones, and using social media to spread links to malware.

16. How does IPv6 differ from IPv4? What are the security implications of using IPv6 instead of IPv4?

IPv6 is the most recent version of the Internet Protocol, designed to eventually replace IPv4. The two main differences between the two are the number of addresses available (IPv6 has a virtually unlimited supply, while IPv4 is running out) and the way the addresses are structured (IPv6 uses a 128-bit address, while IPv4 uses a 32-bit address).

The security implications of using IPv6 are not yet fully known, but there are some concerns that the increased number of addresses available could make it easier for attackers to hide their activities, and that the new address structure could make it more difficult to detect malicious activity.

17. What is a man-in-the-middle attack?

A man-in-the-middle attack is a type of cyber attack where the attacker inserts themselves into a communication between two parties in order to intercept and/or modify the data being exchanged. This can be done in a number of ways, but the most common is by spoofing the IP address of one of the parties involved and redirecting the communication to go through the attacker’s own computer.

18. What is a zero day vulnerability?

A zero day vulnerability is a security flaw that is unknown to the software vendor or developer. This type of vulnerability can be exploited by attackers to gain access to a system or data. Zero day vulnerabilities are often difficult to patch because the vendor or developer is not aware of the issue.

19. What are the main differences between Windows and Linux as operating systems?

The main difference between Windows and Linux as operating systems is that Windows is a proprietary system while Linux is open source. This means that anyone can view and modify the code for Linux, while only certain people can view and modify the code for Windows. This can make Linux more secure, as more people can find and fix security vulnerabilities. However, it can also make Linux more vulnerable to attack, as more people know how the system works.

20. What is a heuristic algorithm?

A heuristic algorithm is a type of algorithm that uses a set of rules or guidelines to solve a problem. This type of algorithm is often used in situations where an exact solution is not possible or would be too time-consuming to find. Heuristic algorithms are often used in malware analysis in order to quickly identify potential threats.


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