Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Dot gov

The .gov means it’s official.
Federal government websites often end in .gov or .mil. Before sharing sensitive information, make sure you’re on a federal government site.


The site is secure.
The https:// ensures that you are connecting to the official website and that any information you provide is encrypted and transmitted securely.

Guide to Malware Incident Prevention and Handling for Desktops and Laptops



Murugiah P. Souppaya, Karen Scarfone


Malware, also known as malicious code, refers to a program that is covertly inserted into another program with the intent to destroy data, run destructive or intrusive programs, or otherwise compromise the confidentiality, integrity, or availability of the victim's data, applications, or operating system. Malware is the most common external threat to most hosts, causing widespread damage and disruption and necessitating extensive recovery efforts within most organizations. This publication provides recommendations for improving an organization's malware incident prevention measures. It also gives extensive recommendations for enhancing an organization's existing incident response capability so that it is better prepared to handle malware incidents, particularly widespread ones. [Supersedes SP 800-83 (November 2005): search.cfm?pub_id=150416]
Special Publication (NIST SP) - 800-83 Rev 1
Report Number
800-83 Rev 1


incident response, information security, malware
Created July 22, 2013, Updated June 9, 2020