A computer virus is a type of malicious software program that, when executed, replicates by reproducing itself by infecting other computer programs by modifying them. As we continue to look at the most destructive viruses in recent history we remind our readers to always have the most updated versions of security protocols on your personal and business computers.
- CIH – The Chernobyl virus (also known as CIH) triggers on April 26 each year, the anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. It overwrites a chip inside PCs effectively paralysing the entire computer. Its author, Chen Ing Hau, was caught by the authorities in Taiwan.
- The “Elk Cloner” for the Apple II Systems was created by Richard Skrenta in 1981 and is considered one of the world’s oldest viruses. It infected the Apple DOS 3.3 and spread to other computers by floppy disk transfer. The “Elk Virus” was responsible for being the first computer virus to cause a massive outbreak ever in history.
- The Anna Kournikova worm – The Anna Kournikova worm posed as a picture of the tennis player, but was in fact a virus written by Jan de Wit, an obsessed admirer from the Netherlands. While the damage was not as extensive as the others on our list it was well-known and cost approximately $166,000.
- The Melissa virus – The Melissa virus, written by David L. Smith in homage to a Florida stripper, was the first successful email-aware virus and inserted a quote from The Simpsons into Word documents. Smith was later sentenced to jail for causing over $80 million worth of damage.
- Sasser & Netsky – Sasser & Netsky are actually two separate worms, but they’re often grouped together because the similarities in the code led experts to believe they were created by the same person. Cost of malware: Around $31 billion.
Viruses are becoming more and more sophisticated and can destroy data costing your company time and money. Call M&H Consulting for a security check up and review.