Russinovich: Rootkits growing as security threat

Joan Goodchild, News Writer

Many experts believe that rootkits will soon be as troublesome as viruses and spyware. And, Mark Russinovich, chief software architect at Sysinternals, an advanced Windows utilities freeware site,

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is probably the most vocal of them all.

In this podcast, Russinovich, who is also co-founder of Winternals Software, in Austin, Texas, talks about the state of Microsoft security today and offers suggestions for protecting Windows systems from rootkits and malware in the future. He spoke to's Joan Goodchild during the Microsoft TechEd 2006 conference in Boston.


  • Download the interview: Listen to Mark Russinovich discuss rootkits and the Windows operating system. Interview total run time: (5:55)
  •   Podcast highlights 

  • (0:14) What issues are facing Microsoft security today?

  • (0:53) What is Microsoft doing to fight rootkits in Windows?

  • (1:43) What can users do to fight rootkits?

  • (2:12) Vista's enhanced security features -- will they be effective against rootkits?

  • (3:00) Is there such a thing as a benevolent rootkit?

  • (4:40) Can virtualization help keep rootkits at bay?
  •   Related stories:  

  • The war against rootkits in the Windows enterprise: Security experts say the threat of rootkits grows daily. So, why aren't security vendors ready to fight back?

  • Will Vista mean victory in the war on rootkits?: Planned security features in Vista aim to eliminate rootkits in the Windows enterprise.

  • Detecting and removing rootkits in Windows: This guide, written entirely by Microsoft's Kurt Dillard, introduces you to a highly-destructive form of malware -- rootkits. Find out what they are, how attackers use these stealthy tools and how to remove them from your systems.

  • Expert advice collection: Rootkit education: In this series of questions and answers from Windows security threats expert Kevin Beaver, find out what a rootkit is, how to find it and, ultimately, remove it.

  • Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool: Progress made, trends observed: This white paper provides an in-depth perspective of the malware landscape based on the data collected by the Malicious Software Removal Tool (MRST), and highlights the impact that the MSRT has had in reducing the impact of malware on Windows users.

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