If you are of a certain age then there is a good chance that you remember how it used to be when it came to computers. Well, the truth of the matter is that over 20 years ago there was not that many people who had a computer in their home. A good amount of people did but it was not what you would consider the norm. But if you did have a computer or at least knew about them then you probably know that you would not get that much space on your computer. This is especially true if you compare it to the computers that we have today. The average amount of RAM that you would get on your computer in the past was 16 MB and the amount of hard drive space would be about 100 MB. While you knew the space that was available on computers would get better over the years there was no way to determine how quick that would happen. Even as close as ten years ago we were at the point where you would have only up to 10 GB of hard drive space and 500 MB of RAM.
Now when you take a look at the computers that we have today you will see that they have increased in space a great deal. The movies that you download from a service like iTunes would in the past take up an entire hard drive. But now you are able to fit hundreds of those same movies on your hard drive. And the music collection that you have is probably a couple of hundred albums, all only taking a few GBs of hard drive space. It is amazing what we can do with such a large amount of hard drive space these days. But it is not only us that are able to take advantage of the large amount of space. The bad guys who are looking to attack your computer are able to find imaginative ways to use that space as well.
That’s right, with us having so much space on our hard drives and our RAM, we allow the bad guys to have more room to play with when it comes to attacking us. Do not be mistaken though, the bad guys still like to make their attacks as small as possible so we do not notice them. But that does not mean that they will not take advantage of the space that they now have. We have given them a little more leeway than they had in the past. This is especially true when it comes to the RAM that is on your computer.
A lot of the black hat hackers out there like to be able to hide attacks in your RAM while the computer is powered on. We have to make a point that attacks that hide in the RAM can only be used while the computer is on. The data that is in RAM goes away anytime there is no power going to the computer anymore. So as soon as you hit the off button all of the data that is in the RAM disappears. So you might be asking yourself why do black hat hackers want to be able to hide in the RAM when it comes to their attack? Why not put in the hard drive where they know that it is going to stay. Well, when you have a RAM based attack then you know that it is going to be that much harder for the antivirus detectors to be able to find you. This is especially true if you are able to get to a part of the RAM stick that is not able to be accessed by the userland portion of the kernel. There are certain parts of the RAM that can only be accessed by a special command. And if a hacker is able to get into that part then they are able to do a lot of damage.