Is It Possible To Detect A Ransomware Virus?

Early detection of ransomware is essential for minimizing damage and disruption. Ransomware can spread quickly through networks and encrypt all accessible files, making it important to catch it as soon as possible to save time and resources needed for recovery.

Ransomware attacks can cause significant downtime, loss of productivity, revenue, and customer trust for impacted businesses. A robust ransomware detection system can help prevent these negative impacts by stopping the threat actors before they have the opportunity to do harm.

Detecting a Ransomware Virus

There are two main categories of ransomware detection methods that IT professionals can utilize: direct and indirect. Direct detection methods attempt to identify the presence of ransomware or other malware directly, while indirect detection methods focus on identifying the consequences of an infection, such as behavioral changes, abnormal network traffic, or unusual system API calls.

Signature-based detection

The primary method for direct ransomware detection is signature-based detection, which compares a file’s hash to a list of hashes known to belong to malicious payloads. These lists are compiled by security product vendors and are constantly updated to help defenders catch even the most recent threats.

However, it is important to note that signature-based detection is not foolproof. There may be unreported or unidentified payloads, newly compiled binaries, and other novel threats that cannot be detected using this method. As a result, signature-based detection is typically used as a first line of defense.

Abnormal behavior

Behavior-based detection relies on security tools looking for suspicious activity that may indicate the presence of malware on the machine. Examples of such behavior include attempts to modify system files or write on system directories, Windows Registry modification, creation of scheduled tasks, invoking of system API calls, and others.

While not all unusual activity patterns result from malicious activity, behavior-based detection complements signature-based detection very well to offer a broader range detection capability to defenders, even if it creates some overhead burden when dealing with false positives.

Malicious traffic

Another reliable way of detecting malware infections is monitoring and scrutinizing network traffic. Ransomware actors use remote trojans, backdoors, and Cobalt Strike beacons to identify lateral movement opportunities in networks before they engage in file encryption, and those tools typically connect to C2 (command and control) addresses to receive commands and new configuration instructions.

Common signs of trouble include establishing connections with reported C2 addresses, sending and receiving encrypted requests, recording abnormally high volumes of traffic during out-of-office hours, detecting traffic on unusual ports, logs that contain evidence of unauthorized network access requests, etc.


Due to the increasing sophistication of hackers, detecting ransomware within your system can be difficult. To address this challenge, it is recommended that businesses seek the assistance of professional cybersecurity firms. Monster Cloud is a renowned company that specializes in helping businesses protect against cyber-terrorism and ransomware threats. With expertise in ransomware prevention, detection, and recovery, we work to ensure that your business can continue to thrive despite security challenges.