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Famous Computer Viruses



  • NIMBA Virus
  • I Love You Virus
  • Melissa Virus
  • Code Red Virus
  • Conficker Worm


  • How and Where did the virus originated?
  • Who was Responsible for creating and distributing it?
  • How did the virus work and what effects did it have?
  • Were there any prosecutions?

mban2048lNimda virus is a computer worm, and is also a file infector. It quickly spread, eclipsing the economic damage caused by past outbreaks such as Code Red. Multiple propagation vectors allowed Nimda to become the Internet’s most widespread virus/worm within 22 minutes.

The worm was released on September 18, 2001[1]. Due to the release date, some media quickly began speculating a link between the virus and Al Qaeda, though this theory ended up proving unfounded.

Nimda affected both user workstations (clients) running Windows 95, 98, Me, NT, 2000 or XP and servers running Windows NT and 2000.

The worm’s name spelled backwards is “admin“.

dbrn182lILOVEYOU Virus was a computer virus that hit numerous computers in 2000, when it was sent as an attachment to an email message with the text “ILOVEYOU” in the subject line. The virus arrived in e-mail boxes on May 4, 2000, with the simple subject of “ILOVEYOU” and an attachment “LOVE-LETTER-FOR-YOU.TXT.vbs”. Upon opening the attachment, the virus sent a copy of itself to everyone in the user’s address list, posing as the user. It also made a number of malicious changes to the user’s system.

k0828303Melissa worm, also known as “Mailissa”, “Simpsons“, “Kwyjibo“, or “Kwejeebo”, is a mass-mailing macro virus. As it is not a standalone program, it is not in fact a worm.

Code Red worm was a computer worm observed on the Internet on July 13, 2001. It attacked computers running Microsoft’s IIS web server. The CodeRed worm was first discovered and researched by eEye Digital Security employees Marc Maiffret and Ryan Permeh. They named the worm CodeRed because they were drinking Pepsi’s Mountain Dew CodeRed over the weekend they analyzed it and because of the worms references to China. Specifically the worm code contained the phrase “Hacked By Chinese!” (see Red Scare) with which the worm defaced websites. Although the worm had been released on July 13, the largest group of infected computers was seen on July 19, 2001. On this day, the number of infected hosts reached 359,000

nfo0025lConficker, also known as Downup, Downadup and Kido, is a computer worm targeting the Microsoft Windows operating system that was first detected in November 2008.[1] The worm uses a combination of advanced malware techniques which has made it difficult to counter, and has since spread rapidly into what is now believed to be the largest computer worm infection since the 2003 SQL Slammer.

Where did they come from?k0998732

Computer viruses are called viruses because they share some of the traits of biological viruses. A computer
virus passes from computer to computer like a biological virus passes from person to person. Unlike a cell, a virus has no way to reproduce by itself. Instead, a biological virus must inject its DNA into a cell. The viral DNA then
uses the cell’s existing machinery to reproduce itself. In some cases, the cell fills with new viral particles until it bursts, releasing the virus. In other cases, the new virus particles bud off the cell one at a time, and the cell
remains alive.

Since the dawn of the computer age the potential for computer viruses to harm your system has been a reality. Though virus attacks seem like a relatively new concept, the vulnerability to those attacks have been around as long as computers could connect to a network, whether a simple computer to computer connection or the wide web connection that is the Internet. In any case the advent of virus attacks seems to have surged because of more media coverage and more users logging on to the Internet. Historically, viruses were directed at a variety of operating systems. Currently though, viruses prey mainly on Microsoft Windows systems. Another difference between viruses of the past and those of the present is the severity of the effect. Pre-1990’s viruses affected computers by causing erratic behavior. Today, not only do viruses cause computers to operate differently, they also steal valuable user information like credit card numbers and social security numbers. You can probably understand now why the virus creation industry is bigger now than it ever was before. The new generation of viruses are more dangerous and thus more lucrative to its creators.


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