Fileless malware: Invisible threat or scaremongering hype?
Ransomware may have claimed the lion’s share of media headlines in 2017, but there’s another type of attack that has become increasingly common in recent months – fileless malware.
Deceptive, sneaky and undeniably effective, fileless malware is growing in popularity as cybercriminals trade in brute force for stealth. While some organizations claim traditional antivirus software is all but blind to fileless malware, the truth is that many IT security products are more than up to the challenge.
In addition, there are a few things you can do yourself to minimize the risk of infection and limit the fallout should something happen to slip past your defenses. Read on to find out how you can protect yourself from the ‘invisible’ threat that is fileless malware.
What is fileless malware?
Fileless malware goes by many names, including ‘non-malware’, ‘memory-based malware’ and ‘living off the land attacks’. Whatever you choose to call it, fileless malware refers to a special type of cyberattack that can infect a system with malware without leaving an executable file on disk. It’s not fileless in the sense that no files are involved whatsoever; rather, the term refers to the fact that – unlike conventional malware – fileless malware can deliver its payload without dropping anything suspicious onto a machine’s hard drive.
So, if fileless malware isn’t stored on your hard drive, where does it live?