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What is a rootkit remover?

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Quick Answer

A rootkit remover is a program or tool used to remove a type of software known as a rootkit. A rootkit is software designed to hide viruses and malware making it difficult for even a standard antivirus to detect or remove the hidden malicious software.

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Full Answer

Rootkits allow unauthorized users to access and gain control over another person’s personal computer. This means that they can execute files, monitor user activity, access logs and change the computer’s settings. Rootkits are considered malware, but they themselves are not malicious. They simply hide malicious software.

Sophos Anti Rootkit, Kaspersky TDSSKiller, Avast aswMBR and Bitdefender Anti Rootkit are some commonly used rootkit removers as of 2015. However, in some cases, a rootkit remover may be useless, especially in a situation where a rootkit is in the kernel. In such a case, an operating system reinstall may be necessary.

When dealing with a firmware rootkit, it may be necessary to replace hardware or use a special type of equipment designed to remove the rootkit.

To help prevent a rootkit invasion, install an antivirus program, employ security patches and implement the principle of minimal privilege. This principle requires that every module, such as a program, process or user should access only that information and resources it requires for its intended purpose.

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