Difference Between Static Malware Analysis and Dynamic Malware Analysis

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: April 30, 2023


Difference Between Static Malware Analysis and Dynamic Malware Analysis

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Examination of malware provides a better understanding of how malware functions and how it may be dealt with to eliminate the threats it poses. The analysis of the malware should be achievable in light of several purposes, including understanding the level of malware contamination, being aware of the consequences of a malware attack, differentiating the concept of the virus, and determining the functions of the malware.

The process or method of analyzing malware is used to discover the source of a particular piece of malware as well as its possible effects on a system. Anything that seems malevolent or behaves maliciously, such as a virus, worm, bug, Trojan, spyware, adware, or any other similar program, might be considered malware. Malware refers to any program that raises security concerns and has the potential to damage your computer system. Even though more and more people are using anti-malware software applications, the globe is still seeing a fast change in the ways that malware is used to target computers. Everything that is linked to the internet is at risk of being infected by malicious software.

Static Vs Dynamic Malware Analysis

The main difference between static malware analysis and dynamic malware analysis is that the former involves evaluating the supplied malware test without actually executing it, whilst the latter is carried out systematically inside a controlled environment.

An interaction that involves examining malware in parallel without actually executing the code is known as a static analysis. The majority of the time, static analysis is done by determining the mark of the parallel document. This mark is a piece of intriguing distinguishing evidence for the twofold record, and it should be feasible to compute the cryptographic hash of the record and see every portion of it. The method of evaluating a binary file containing malware in a way that does not involve executing the code is known as static analysis. Calculating the cryptographic hash of the file and having an understanding of each component are both necessary steps in performing static analysis. Static analysis is typically carried out by determining the signature of the binary file, which serves as a one-of-a-kind identifier for the binary file.

To reverse-engineer, the malware binary file put the executable into a disassembler like IDA. This will allow the file to be broken down into its parts. The code that is meant to be executed by machines may be transformed into code written in assembly language so that it can be read and understood more readily by people. After that, the analyst examines the program to have a deeper comprehension of what the software is capable of and what it is designed to carry out.

The execution of the malware test and observation of its behavior on the framework are both components of dynamic analysis. The goal of dynamic analysis is to eradicate the contamination or stop it from spreading to other frameworks. The system is set up in a closed, detachable virtual environment so that the malware check may be focused entirely without the risk of causing damage to your system. To eliminate the infection or prevent it from spreading to other systems, dynamic analysis entails executing the malicious software sample and watching its behavior while it is active on the system. To conduct an in-depth analysis of the malware sample without putting your system in danger, the system has been installed inside of a private and separate virtual environment.

When doing an advanced dynamic analysis, a debugger may be used to discover the functioning of a malware executable, which is information that, had it been obtained using other methods, would have been impossible to acquire. Because it is a behavior-based, rather than static, analysis, it makes it difficult to overlook crucial behaviors.

Difference Between Static Malware Analysis and Dynamic Malware Analysis in Tabular Form

Parameters of Comparison Static Malware Analysis Dynamic Malware Analysis
Meaning  The term "static analysis" refers to a collaborative effort that selects the beginning of harmful reports in order to comprehend their direct without actually running the virus. On the other hand, dynamic analysis is a more point-by-point interaction of malware detection and examination that is carried out in a controlled environment, and the complete cycle is verified to observe the behavior of the infection.
Analysis  An examination using static analysis is a really fundamental and simple method that may be used to investigate a malware test without actually carrying it out. As a result, the investigator does not have to go through each and every step of the cycle.  The dynamic analysis examination, on the other hand, entails doing a meticulous investigation that makes use of the behavior and activities of the malware test while it is being carried out in order to have a better understanding of the example.
Technique Involved  Dissecting the mark of the malware twofold record is part of the static analysis. This is an intriguing identifiable evidence for the parallel document.  The process of dynamic analysis involves examining the behavior of malware in a sandbox environment with the intention that it will not impact the operation of other frameworks.
Approach  When it comes to the detection and investigation of malware, the mark-based approach of the static analysis is used.  The dynamic analysis makes use of a conduct-based method to determine the utility of the malware by taking into consideration the actions carried out by the particular virus.
Methodology  The static analysis is a simplistic, permit-based remark system.  An investigation of the actions that are taking place that is more thorough is carried out through dynamic analysis.

What is Static Malware Analysis?

The analysis of any sort of malware as part of static malware testing involves carrying out the procedure without actually running and executing the code. Typically, this is accomplished by selecting some property of the infection that is twice. The etching provides crucial evidence that cannot be refuted for the double record. Participate in the deciphering of the two-fold record's cryptography and see how the totality of its bits determines its engraving.

The executability of the malware equivalent record is moved into the correct location, and the machine-executable code generated by the disassembler is converted into low-level computing construct code. As a consequence of this, determining a malware-paired document results in the document being supplied in a form that is straightforward for a person to read and grasp. The specialist will have a better understanding of the malicious software after having a look at the code for the low-level computing component.

Examining a specific malware sample in detail without actually putting it through its paces (by running or executing the code) is what's involved in static malware analysis. In most cases, this is accomplished by figuring out the signature of the malicious binary; the signature functions as a one-of-a-kind identifier for the binary file. To identify the signature of the binary file, it is helpful to do a cryptographic hash calculation on the file and to comprehend each component of the file. The malware binary file's executable is loaded into a disassembler (for example, IDA), and as a result, the machine-executable code is turned into code that is assembly language. Because of this, a human can read and comprehend a binary file that was created by malware once it has been subjected to reverse engineering. By reading the code written in assembly language, the analyst can get a deeper understanding of the malicious software. It is possible to have a better understanding of the capabilities that it is designed to do as well as the potential influence that it may have on any system or network. When doing static analysis, analysts make use of a variety of methods, some of which include file fingerprinting, virus scanning, memory dumping, packer identification, and debugging.

An unmatched concept may be stated concerning its changed functions of it, as well as the possible influence it can have on any system or company. During a static examination, examiners use a variety of approaches, some of which include record fingerprinting, virus filtering, memory unloading, packer identification, and investigating.

What is Dynamic Malware Analysis?

The dynamic assessment of malware, which is not at all the same thing as the static analysis of malware, includes an inspection while the code is being executed in a managed environment. After the dynamic malware has been executed in an isolated virtual environment for some time, it is then subjected to direction and analysis.

The purpose of dynamic analysis is to get an understanding of how things function and make use of the data to prevent the sickness from spreading or from being eradicated. The debugger is used in state-of-the-art dynamic malware evaluation, in addition to being employed to pick the convenience of executable malware.

The runtime behavior of malware may be analyzed with the help of dynamic analysis, which can be used in this capacity. In contrast to static analysis, one does not need to have an in-depth understanding of, for instance, how the packing is being carried out. In static analysis, one must first understand whether or not the creator of the malicious software employed a custom packer, and only after unpacking the file can analysis begin. In the event of dynamic analysis, this requirement could not apply.

Using a sandbox, which will virtualize the whole environment and also replicates the network services like DNS servers and other similar services, is one of the mechanisms that may be used to do dynamic analysis. A few examples of sandboxes are the GFI, the Cuckoo Sandbox, and the Norman Sandbox.

To do this, one strategy is to disconnect the computer from the internet and then execute the virus on the local system. Malware might be assaulting the internet, but it could also be doing other things, such as hollowing out processes or changing registry settings, for example. Because of this, the actual machine might get corrupted.

Another method involves operating the malicious software inside a virtual machine while blocking all external connectivity by using a host-only networking configuration (no NAT to outside). This presents a problem since some forms of malware may identify whether they are operating inside a virtual environment, and if they do, they do not behave appropriately. Another benefit of using a virtual machine is the ability to take a snapshot of the virtual machine after the initial configuration, as well as whenever it is required in the future. Even if malware corrupts the VM, we will be able to use this to restore it to a working state.

In contrast to the static inquiry, the dynamic malware examination is focused on behavior, and as a result, investigators will not overlook crucial behaviors of any strain of malware.

Main Differences Between Static Malware Analysis and Dynamic Malware Analysis in Points

  • The mark-based technique is used in static malware analysis, while the direct and uncomplicated approach is utilized in dynamic malware analysis.
  • During the process of static analysis, the code being analyzed is not run, but during the process of dynamic analysis, the code being analyzed is run in a sandbox environment.
  • The static malware is extremely basic, and it first recognizes the path that the data will take and makes an effort to investigate its capabilities. A dynamic examination, on the other hand, is more of an examination of the activities and the influence of the malware, with the malware considering it at every point in time of its functioning and association. The malware itself carries out this kind of examination.
  • Static analysis works for the typical form of malware, but the dynamic analysis is conduct-based and needs a more advanced and up-to-date kind of malware.
  • Analysis of malware using static methods is very straightforward and fundamental. The exercises are evaluated in a manner that is more circumspect thanks to the use of dynamic analysis.
  • When it comes to detecting and analyzing malware, static analysis employs a signature-based methodology. A signature is nothing more than a one-of-a-kind identifier for a particular piece of malware, and it takes the form of a string of bytes. When searching for signatures, many types of search are utilized. Anti-malware tools that rely on signatures to identify malicious software are successful against the majority of malware strains, but they are useless against more complex and advanced forms of malware. The significance of dynamic analysis becomes clear at this point. The dynamic analysis makes use of a behavior-based method rather than a signature-based approach to assess the functioning of malware. This is accomplished by analyzing the activities carried out by the particular piece of malware in question.
  • The signature of the malicious binary file is analyzed as part of the static analysis process. The signature serves as a one-of-a-kind identifier for the malicious binary file. To make the code in the binary file intelligible by humans, it is possible to do reverse engineering on the file using a disassembler such as IDA. This will turn the machine-executable code into assembly language code. File fingerprinting, virus scanning, memory dumping, packer identification, and debugging are just some of the methods that may be used during static analysis. The purpose of doing dynamic analysis in a sandbox environment is to examine the behavior of malware to prevent it from affecting other systems. Through the use of automated analysis provided by commercial sandboxes, manual analysis is being phased out.
  • Static malware analysis is a method of analyzing a malware sample that does not include running the sample of malware. As a result, the procedure does not need the malware analyst to go through every aspect of the process. It does nothing more than monitor the actions of the malicious software to figure out what it is capable of or what damage it may do to the system. On the other hand, dynamic malware analysis entails doing an in-depth investigation by observing the activities and behaviors of a malware sample as it is being put through its paces to get a deeper comprehension of the sample. The system is installed in a confined and isolated location, and it is subject to the appropriate level of monitoring.


To control the propagation of malware and stop it from infecting other valuable frameworks, documents, and indexes, location, distinguishing proof, and starting research are essential components of malware examination.

Both are commonly used techniques for locating malware, with the exception that static analysis uses a mark-based methodology while dynamic analysis uses a behavior-based approach to deal with malware detection. Regardless of the method used for malware discovery, both methods allow us to better understand how the virus functions and what can be done.


  • https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-642-54525-2_39
  • https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-319-73951-9_2

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"Difference Between Static Malware Analysis and Dynamic Malware Analysis." Diffzy.com, 2024. Fri. 23 Feb. 2024. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-static-malware-analysis-and-dynamic-1014>.

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