Day 26: Cyber Careers – Who or What is a Malware Analyst ?

A malware analyst decrypts malicious applications and compiles reports on their findings. Reverse-engineers convert compiled programs from machine code to readable code, and malware analysts are typically reverse-engineers. Because reverse-engineering is so important, malware analysts must have advanced programming expertise, particularly in lower-level languages such as Assembly and C. The aim is to determine all of the activities that a malicious application carries out, to recognize it, and to report it. They use their programming skills to comprehend how an assault was deployed, why it was or wasn’t effective, and how it can be defended against. A malware analyst has the knowledge needed to dissect an exploit and identify a target vulnerability. Working with other cybersecurity experts they make an invaluable contribution towards protecting against and mitigating cyber threats.

This role is unique within a security enterprise because it requires an understanding of offensive as well as defensive techniques and security principles.

What is the Salary of a Malware Analyst?

According to Glassdoor’s 2022 report, the average yearly salary for a malware analyst in the United States is $102,024.

What Skills should a Malware Analyst have?

An ideal applicant should possess one or more of the following abilities:

  • Strong knowledge of C/C++, Windows API, and Windows OS internals
  • Reconstruct unknown file formats & data structures
  • Reconstruct unknown TCP/IP protocols
  • Python, Perl, and Ruby scripting.
  • Ability to write detailed technical reports.

What are the Responsibilities of a Malware Analyst?

  • Perform static analysis, or reverse engineering, on malicious programs.
  • By keeping track of malware samples’ activity in a safe environment, do dynamic analysis on them.
  • Report all the findings in writing.
  • Analyzing software and programs with analysis tools can help you spot dangers.
  • Malware should be categorized based on dangers and features by an analyst.
  • Keep your software updated and up to speed on the most recent malware to protect yourself.

Closing thoughts

Learning about malware analysis may be a very difficult and rewarding route, regardless of whether the goal is to launch a new job or out of pure curiosity. When you have been working on a file for hours and finally find the crucial feature or piece of data you were looking for, the reward is unlike anything else. It can test your patience, focus, and occasionally even your temper. The battle between those who use malware and those who try to stop it will continue into the future, and as technology develops, so do the techniques used by malware creators to design programs that exploit and manage it. The next generation of malware fighters, will need more specialized knowledge than ever before to keep up.

Hope you enjoyed this blog post on the Malware Analyst career. Well, that will be all for the Day 26 post. Catch you in the next post