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 (ro͞ot′kĭt′, ro͝ot′-)
A set of software tools used to gain unauthorized access to a computer system on a network and to control its operation.

[From root (access), complete administrative access to a computer.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(Computer Science) computing a set of programs used to gain unauthorized access to a computer's operating system, esp in order to destroy or alter files, attack other computers, etc
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in periodicals archive ?
Summary: ESET researchers discovered a cyber-attack that used a UEFI rootkit to establish a presence on the victims' computers.
The development and promotion of cloud computing cause the virtual machine to become the new target of rootkit attack[1] [2] [3].
offload of the infected system that will capture any functioning rootkit. The
Kaspersky Lab first became aware of the Turla cyber espionage campaign in March 2013, when the company's experts were investigating an incident involving a highly sophisticated rootkit. Originally known as the "Sun rootkit", based on a filename used as a virtual file system "sunstore.dmp", it is also accessible as "\.Sundrive1" and "\.Sundrive2".
This is reminiscent of the Sony BMG rootkit from 2005, but more disturbing because it goes to the heart of privacy concerns and the fundamental trust that consumers place in SSL protected websites.
San Jose, CA, September 22, 2013 --( LynuxWorks, Inc., a technology leader in the cyber threat defense market, today announced at the Gartner Security & Risk Management Summit in London, the RDS5201, a new and unique product to help detect the stealthiest of advanced persistent threats (APT), the rootkit. Built on the LynxSecure 5.2 separation kernel and hypervisor (announced at the RSA 2013 Conference in February), this small form factor appliance has been designed to offer a unique detection capability that complements traditional security mechanisms as they try to protect against the growing number and complexity of cyber threats.
The 11 technical papers discuss such aspects as identifying a shared mental model among incident responders, identifying current practice for information security incident management in the power industry as preparation for smart grids, developing an approach for forensic analysis using optical character recognition and based on cloud computing, Bayesian trust and risk forecasting for compound systems, forensic applications of fingerprinting based on file system metadata, and visualizing indicators of rootkit infections in memory forensics.
Moreover, even if the rootkit was somehow able to modify the boot record, Kaspersky Lab's technology will detect it and undertake to treat the infection.
Jiang has been at the forefront of the discovery of several other Androidsecurityflaws,including, in June, a rootkit attackthat might have allowed malicious software to be concealed on an affected device.
This discovery, by Google security researcher Tavis Ormandy, led many to say that Ubisoft's Uplay DRM software is in fact a rootkit, which, once installed, opens up users' PCs to attack from malicious websites.
Its rootkit removal score is especially low because most of the rootkits it detected were still running after its alleged removal.