Smudge is a Windows forensics tool with a simple premise, attackers are lazy when installing persistence mechanisms. Persistence usually involves installing some mechanism on a compromised machine to allow the attacker continued access to the machine across reboots, updates, and password changes.
However, while these persistence mechanisms may actually be well hidden and the C2 agents patient, many professional pieces of penetration testing software are so careless as to leave unobfuscated strings on disk or unsantized strings in memory. Smudge takes advantage of this by searching disk and process memory for strings resembling http resources, domain names and IP addresses. Smudge’s purpose is to point out anomalies and shed light on suspicious files and processes. Smudge leaves judgement of what is malware up to the operator.