What you need to know about computer Viruses
For over 50 years, computer viruses have been developed and each year with the advent of the digital age as we know it, many viruses are created with more efficacy than the one before. It’s a constant cat and mouse game between virus developers and Anti-Virus software companies around the world.
Since 1971, with the creation of the very first computer Virus called ‘Creeper system’, a wide variety of viruses have primarily been designed to shut down systems, steal information and/or disable peoples processing power all together. In 1971 ‘Creeper system’ was created by a technology company in the US purely to replicate itself and fill up the hard drive of a computer to capacity until it could no longer operate.
In 1986, ‘Brain’, a computer virus originally designed as a copy protection for MS-DOS, landed up stopping the computer from booting up at all.
Then in 1988, a US grad student developed a virus named ‘the Morris’ which landed up infecting 15,000 computers in just under 15 hours. In 1988, that was almost the entire internet. He originally designed it purely to see how vast the internet was.
With the advent of the digital age, more famous and impactful viruses have been developed, some of which you may remember.
In 1991, Australia saw its first significant virus named ‘the Michelangelo’ which was reported to have infected just over 20,000 computers. It was developed to be inactive until the 4th
of March every single year, when it would fill the computers storage to capacity, causing a failure to boot up.
In 1998, one of the most damaging viruses of all time was developed by a Taiwanese student, overwriting all important files. This virus was named’ CIH’ infected more than 60 million computers worldwide, becoming catastrophic to all industries around the globe.
In 1999, the first wide spread Word Macro virus was developed to automatically send passwords for erotic websites requiring membership to the first 50 email addresses in your address book. This virus was named ‘Melissa’. It caused email servers to crash due to such high traffic.
In 2000, the very well know virus named ‘iloveyou’ infected over 50 million computers in just over a week. It came from the Phillipines and was designed to overwrite all data on your computer, wreaking havoc in companies around the globe. From then, there have been too many viruses released to mention, but a few of the more famous ones you may have heard of were Anna Kournikova, Sober, Zeus, Locky and WannaCry, just to name a few.
At Altech IT, we understand that it is a constant cat and mouse game when it comes to virus development and the protection and ultimately the destruction of each new virus created.
Having been in the IT business for over 25 years, at Altech IT we have seen a multitude of viruses come and go with a variety of destruction ability. But because we understand the history of the computer virus, we have the ability to locate and eradicate any virus big or small. In the last 25 years, we have had 99.9% success rate in getting rid of any virus.
At Altech IT, we are aware that the risks are ever changing, thus we constantly take the most vigilant steps to help you remain safe. We advise our clients that the most common viruses today stem from fraudulent websites, so never open an email or an attachment if you are not absolutely sure if they are legitimate and from a trustworthy sender. A big give-away are mis-spelled names or grammar mistakes in titles or URL links to websites. For Example, mistaking ofice.com for Microsoft office.com will definitely take you to a malware website.
At Altech IT, we advise using an Anti-Virus software with behavior monitoring detection. The manufacturers of this software are continually updating and applying new tools to it in order to fight each variety of virus ensuring you stay cybersafe at all times.