1. Review Operating System Event Logs:
2. Check Running Processes:
Inspecting the running processes on the system can be a good indicator of whether or not there is malicious activity occurring. Malicious actors often install software that is designed to run continuously in the background, or create services and/or drivers that can be used to gain persistence on the system. Utilizing a tool to scan all of the running processes can be useful in detecting anomalous processes that need further investigation.
3. Look For Suspicious Software:
Malicious actors often use tools to infect systems and gain access to the system, and these tools can often be recognized by examining the software installed on the system. By looking for known malicious software, such as keyloggers and remote access tools, a malicious activity can often be identified quickly and easily. Additionally, standard system utilities, such as msconfig and regedit, can be used to verify the software installed on the system.
4. Examine Task Scheduler:
Examining the task scheduler is another great way to identify malicious activity on a Windows system. Malicious actors often set up recurring tasks or services that can be used to maintain access to the system or to further propagate their malicious software. Checking for irregularly scheduled tasks in the task scheduler or even tasks that have been disabled can be a powerful tool for identifying malicious activity.
5. Scan The Network:
A network scan can be one of the best ways to identify malicious activity on a Windows system. Malicious actors often use the network to spread their malware, and by utilizing a tool to scan the network, a malicious activity can be identified quickly and easily. In addition, a network scan can be used to identify any potential backdoors or other anomalies that may be present on the system.
6. Utilize Anti-virus Software:
The final step in identifying malicious activity on a Windows system is to utilize an anti-virus software. Anti-virus software is designed to detect malicious activity and alert the user when suspicious activity is occurring. By using an anti-virus software, a malicious actor can be identified quickly and easily. Additionally, anti-virus software is designed to be lightweight and does not require much system resources, making it a great tool for identifying malicious activity.