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InvisibleLanaM
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Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert
    #1386523 - 03/18/03 04:22 AM (13 years, 8 months ago)

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story2&cid=569&ncid=738&e=1&u=/nm/20030318/tc_nm/tech_singapore_sophos_dc

Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert
Tue Mar 18, 3:17 AM ET Add Technology - Reuters to My Yahoo!

By Jennifer Tan

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Male. Obsessed with computers. Lacking a girlfriend. Aged 14 to 34. Capable of sowing chaos worldwide.

That is the profile of the average computer-virus writer, an anti-virus expert said on Tuesday.

About 1,000 viruses are created every month by virus writers increasingly intent on targeting new operating systems, said Jan Hruska, the chief executive of British-based Sophos Plc, the world's fourth-largest anti-virus solutions provider. "So far, we've seen no indication of decreased interest in virus writing," Hruska told Reuters in an interview.

"Virus writers are constantly looking for new vectors of infection, targeting the vulnerabilities of operating systems to exploit them for their creations," he said.

Hruska said the number of viruses created would continue to climb in the coming years.

In almost all cases, virus writers were computer-obsessed males between the ages of 14 to 34 years, he said.

"They have a chronic lack of girlfriends, are usually socially inadequate and are drawn compulsively to write self-replicating codes. It's a form of digital graffiti to them," Hruska said.

In January, Welsh virus writer and web designer Simon Vallor, 22, was sentenced to two years' jail for spreading three mass-mailing computer viruses that allegedly infected more than 27,000 computers in 42 countries.

EXPLOITING BUGS AND FLAWS

To create and spread cyber infections, virus writers explore known bugs in existing software, or look for vulnerabilities in new versions.

"With more and more new OS (operating system) versions, there will be more new forms of viruses, as every single software or OS will carry new features, and new executables that can be carriers of the infection," Hruska said.

Executables are files that launch applications in a computer's operating system, and feature more prominently in new platforms like Microsoft Corp's Windows 2000 (news - web sites) and Windows XP (news - web sites) than they did in the older DOS or Windows 3.1, he added.

Earlier last month, the malicious Slammer worm spread across the globe in 10 minutes, nearly cutting off Web access in South Korea (news - web sites) and shutting down some U.S. bank teller machines.

The virus, which exploited a flaw in Microsoft's SQL Server database software, caused damage by rapidly replicating itself and clogging the pipelines of the global data network.

The next target for the virus writing community could be Microsoft's .NET platform for Web Services, which involves connecting different computer systems to do business seamlessly over the Internet, Hruska noted.

Virus writers also share information to create variants of the same infection, such as the Klez worm, which has been among the world's most prolific viruses in the last 13 months, he said.

The Klez, a mass-mailing worm that originated in November 2001, propagates via email using a wide variety of messages and destroys files on local and network drives.

"The source code for the Klez could have been made widely available on the Net, and budding virus writers would download the source code, modify, and relaunch it as a different variant. It's one of those viruses that refuse to go away," he said.


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OfflineJackal
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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: Lana]
    #1386643 - 03/18/03 05:17 AM (13 years, 8 months ago)

Personally I think virus writers are the scum of the Earth.

When I was a kid, we used to throw stones at greenhouses and stay to watch the chaos. Nowadays people cause chaos without even bearing witness. What sad sad people, pouring a lot of time and effort into creating a program which does nothing but create stress and misery.

A message to any virus writers, get a life, get a girlfriend and grow up!

/rant over!


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InvisibleTinMan
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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: Jackal]
    #1387298 - 03/18/03 09:25 AM (13 years, 8 months ago)

I don't write viruses, I just write programs that allow people to use exploits easier.


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OfflineSeussA
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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: Jackal]
    #1387662 - 03/18/03 11:03 AM (13 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

What sad sad people, pouring a lot of time and effort into creating a program which does nothing but create stress and misery.




You need to sit down and disassemble a few of these sometime. I have seen some absolute works of art emerge in the form of a virus. Self encrypting code that traps int 01 and decrypts itself instruction at a time. Polymorphic code that changes the instructions used to execute an algorithim while maintaining the algorithim itself. Ways of tunneling interrupts to hide from scanners.

If you want to rant, blame Micro$oft for putting out a shit product that allows these programs to execute in the first place. When was the last time you heard about the VMS or Unix virus? Granted, there have been worms that took advantage of security holes, but a true virus is pretty much unheard of on these other platforms.

I am not defending the virus writers here. They cause untold losses in time and money and stress. But one must appreciate the skills that some of them possess. We should also not forget that microsoft is more interested in getting our $$$ than in lowering our stress levels. If they would write a decent OS, the computer virus would be a thing of the past.

Finally, don't confuse the modern 'script kiddie' with a clever and gifted programmer. The kiddies do a lot more harm with nothing more for an agenda than to plaster their name out there.


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OfflineMojo_Risin
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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: Seuss]
    #1387725 - 03/18/03 11:19 AM (13 years, 8 months ago)

what anti-virus program should be recommended?


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Offlinedebianlinux
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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: Mojo_Risin]
    #1388186 - 03/18/03 01:54 PM (13 years, 8 months ago)

common sense :smile:


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Invisibleadrug

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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: debianlinux]
    #1388534 - 03/18/03 04:06 PM (13 years, 8 months ago)

You can't go wrong with Norton Anti-virus. I hear nowadays though you have to pay yearly for updates, not sure how much that is. I bought Norton AV Deluxe 4.0 Gold back in '98 for $70 and still get free software and virus definition updates. Every other AV program I've tried can't hold a candle to Norton.


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OfflineJackal
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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: Seuss]
    #1389621 - 03/19/03 12:53 AM (13 years, 8 months ago)

I'm not saying that the code is good or bad, Its the motives of the low-lives who produce it.
Why can't they pour their energy into writing code for a constructive end, they would gain far more recognition for their efforts, and lets face it thats what they all crave - recognition!

Quote:

When was the last time you heard about the VMS or Unix virus?



These low-lives want to cause as much chaos as possible, and seeing that the Windows platform is the most common - thats what they're going to target.

Virus writers are essentially terrorists - cowards who are intent on causing chaos and destruction without revealing their identity. From the ones who interrupt my media playing on my desktop with crappy pop-ups to the ones who target large corporations. They are all spineless cowards who thinks the World owes them.


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OfflineTeKHeAD009
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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: Seuss]
    #1391486 - 03/19/03 01:17 PM (13 years, 8 months ago)

I agree, that the the real viruses written in assembly are unbelievably complex and, in a strange way artistically beaughtiful. The knowledge and intelligence needed to produce one is these pieces of code far surpasses what I currently have.

I disagree with some of the motives behind writing these though such as stealing information, crashing the internet, being purpousely destructive, or leaving a back door open to the under world for hacking.


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Offlinezeronio
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Re: Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males -- Expert [Re: Lana]
    #1393362 - 03/19/03 11:26 PM (13 years, 8 months ago)

Quote:

Computer Virus Writers Mostly Obsessed Males 




LOL. Aren't all males obsessed?
BTW I wrote a virus for my science project in the high school and got an A.  :grin: It was harmless - just replicating and spreading around. And I never released it in wild. 


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