Malware Root Cause Analysis Dont Be a Bone Head Slide Deck

Tuesday, June 3, 2014 Posted by Corey Harrell
Today I gave a presentation titled Malware Root Cause Analysis Don't Be a Bone Head at the New York State Cyber Security Conference. This presentation was a follow-up to the presentation I gave last year titled Finding Malware Like Iron Man. Last year I laid out a triage process to find malware and this year I went into more depth discussing how the malware got there in the first place. This post contains the following for my talk: CFP, slide deck, and video I showed.


Computer users are confronted with a reoccurring issue every day. This happens regardless if the user is an employee doing work for their company or a person doing online shopping trying to catch the summer sales. The user is using their computer and the next thing you know it is infected with malware. Even Hollywood is not immune to this issue as illustrated in the TV show Bones.  The most common action to address a malware infection is to reimage, rebuild, and redeploy the system back into production.  Analysis of the system to understand where the malware came from is not a priority or goal.

Root case analysis needs to be performed on systems impacted by malware to improve decision making. The most crucial question to answer is how did this happen since it will determine if we were targeted and more importantly what can be done to mitigate this from re-occurring. Last year, in my presentation Finding Malware Like Iron Man I explored the first step in root cause analysis, which is locating the malware. The next step in root cause analysis is to identify the malware's source.

In this technical presentation Corey will discuss the root cause analysis process to determine how malware infected a computer running the Windows operating system. The topics will include: why perform root cause analysis, how not to perform root cause analysis,  compromise root cause analysis model, attack vector artifacts, and scenarios.

Slide Deck

Malware Root Cause Analysis Don't Be a Bone Head slides viewable online

Malware Root Cause Analysis Don't Be a Bone Head slides PDF file


I chopped up the Bones TV episode The Crack in the Code (Season 7 episode 6) I purchased through iTunes. However, others have posted the segment I used in my presentation. For your viewing pleasure here is "Malware on Bone".

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