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<nettime> Sources Looking for Motivation of Computer Virus Creators
Michael Gurstein on Mon, 27 Jan 2003 01:49:03 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> Sources Looking for Motivation of Computer Virus Creators

Surely there is something quite bizarre about the whole world (well at least
the billion or so Internet and related users) being vulnerable to a clever
(post?) adolescent's call for attention.

Since in fact, there isn't all that much we are going to be able to do to
prevent similar behaviours in the future (putting all those with the skill
to cause such mayhem on the beach in Guantananmo seems out of the question),
maybe more attention should be paid to making the hardware less vulnerable
to this kind of attack.


------- Forwarded message follows -------
To:             	MediaMentor Discussion Group
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From:           	"David P. Dillard" <jwne {AT} astro.temple.edu>
Date sent:      	Sun, 26 Jan 2003 09:45:03 -0500 (EST)
Subject:        	[MediaMentor] RESOURCES: Sources Looking for
Motivation of Computer Virus Creators
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Another round of computer virus attacks is occuring.

Headline: Computer virus slows Internet traffic -- Detail Story
Your shorter link is:

SEOUL/LONDON, Jan 25: A rapidly spreading computer worm on Saturday
infested networks and bogged down Internet traffic across the globe,
crippling online services in one of the world's most wired countries,
South Korea.

Virus slows web traffic to a crawl
Worm effectively shuts down Internet in Asia, Europe, U.S.
Reed Stevenson and Kevin Krolicki, with files from Jason Fekete
The Ottawa Citizen
Your shorter link is:

Computer worm slows global Net traffic
By Reuters
January 25, 2003, 6:07 PM PT

update Worldwide Internet traffic suddenly slowed down dramatically for
hours on Saturday, after a fast-spreading computer worm clogged pipelines
of the global network, officials said.
Experts called it the most damaging attack on the Internet in 18 months as
networks across Asia, Europe and America were effectively shut down.

Even though the worst of the disruptions appeared to have passed by
Saturday afternoon, some network disruption was likely to continue until
Monday when businesses return to work, experts said.


These computer virus attacks are serious international incidents that
disrupt communication, research and work around the world.  These events
lead to a very logical question that was actually asked on another
discussion group.  My post in answer to that question, in which I tried to
locate some explanations for this behavior follows the question.  In
thinking about this issue as a research topic, one is driven to conclude
that the information regarding this issue must be sprarse and speculative.
Those who create viruses are either in jail, convicted of the crime,
maintaining silence so as not to divulge material that may be used against
them in court or out of the public eye, hiding so they will not be
arrested for their crime.  This would not be a very easy group to
interview or study.  This grain of salt may be wise to bear in mind in
looking at the sources listed below.


"can someone please explain to me what possible satisfaction the
perpetrators of these viruses can be achieving?"

This is an interesting and important question so let's see what we can

Envy and Destructiveness: Understanding the Impulses Behind Computer
For the Full Version of this Paper and the rest of the Proceedings from ET
HICOMP98 Please see Details about the Full Proceedings in Book form.

Detecting and Preventing Trojan Horse Attacks

Statement for the Record of
Ronald L. Dick, Director
National Infrastructure Protection Center
Federal Bureau of Investigation
on the
Issue of Intrusions into Government
Computer Networks
Before the
House Energy and Commerce Committee,
Oversight and Investigation Subcommittee
Washington, D.C.

MISC> [DUC] INFO/NYT: Cybercrime has Bred a New Kind of Surfer: The
Amateur CyberDetective

Computer Crime
Copyright 1999, 2002 by Ronald B. Standler
Table of Contents
1. Unauthorized use of computer
          Altering Websites
          Denial of Service (DoS) Attacks
2. Malicious computer programs
          Common, but Unacceptable, Justifications for Malicious Programs
3. Harassment & Stalking
4. Weak punishment in USA
5. Computer crime statutes in USA
6. Sue criminals in tort

Internet Besieged : Countering Cyberspace Scofflaws
Home > Computers & Internet Books > Web Development > Wired Culture
[Book Advertisement With Book Summary]

Social Implications of Computer Viruses
[Virus Writers]  [Script Kiddies]  [Social Engineering]  [Sources]
Excerpt Below - Full Text at this URL:

So Who is the Generic Virus Writer Anyway?
In 1994, Sarah Gordon published a groundbreaking paper entitled The
Generic Virus Writer.[1] In this paper Gordon attempted to delineate the
different categories of virus writers and also apply ethical models to
their actions. According to the author, the four main types of virus
writers at the time were:

The Adolescent

Virus writer aged 13-17; has written at least one computer virus; has
distributed at least one computer virus into the wild.
The College Student

Virus writer aged 18-24; has written at least one computer virus; has
distributed at least one computer virus into the wild. Student in
university or university level classes.
The Adult/Professionally Employed

Post-college or adult, professionally employed; has written at least one
virus; has distributed at least one virus into the wild.
The Ex-Virus Writer

Virus writer who has written and distributed one or more computer viruses.
The viruses must have been found in the wild; the author must have
supplied sufficient proof to enable determination that he did indeed write
the virus; there must be no evidence that he has written or continued to
write viruses for a period of at least 6 months prior to commencement of
this research.[2]


One can even find a term paper for students who do not want to waste their
time writing their own term paper on this topic at this URL:

_Computer Crime and Ethics _
Your shorter link is:


"From the gut (and the heart)"
Editorials by Paul Olivier
 Web Attack!

And here is a print article that may be of interest on this topic:

Some human dimensions of computer virus creation and infection.
Author: Bissett, Andy.; Shipton, Geraldine.
Source: International Journal of Human-Computer Studies
v. 52  no. 5  May 2000  p. 899-913

Now folks, remember to take your anti-virus injections so that you do not
catch one of these viruses along with a cold.

David Dillard
Temple University
(215) 204 - 4584
jwne {AT} astro.temple.edu


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