Jump to navigation Jump to search Not to be confused with List of computer worms. This cryptoLocker Italy – Removing The Ransomware Virus may require cleanup to meet Wikipedia’s quality standards. This timeline of computer viruses and worms presents a chronological timeline of noteworthy computer viruses, computer worms, Trojan horses, similar malware, related research and events.
John von Neumann’s article on the “Theory of self-reproducing automata” is published. The article is based on lectures given by von Neumann at the University of Illinois about the “Theory and Organization of Complicated Automata” in 1949. The Creeper system, an experimental self-replicating program, is written by Bob Thomas at BBN Technologies to test John von Neumann’s theory. In fiction, the 1973 Michael Crichton movie Westworld made an early mention of the concept of a computer virus, being a central plot theme that causes androids to run amok. April: ANIMAL is written by John Walker for the UNIVAC 1108. The novel The Shockwave Rider by John Brunner is published, coining the word “worm” to describe a program that propagates itself through a computer network. A program called Elk Cloner, written for Apple II systems, was created by Richard Skrenta.
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November: The term “virus” is coined by Frederick Cohen in describing self-replicating computer programs. January: The Brain boot sector virus is released. Brain is considered the first IBM PC compatible virus, and the program responsible for the first IBM PC compatible virus epidemic. December: Ralf Burger presented the Virdem model of programs at a meeting of the underground Chaos Computer Club in Germany. The Virdem model represented the first programs that could replicate themselves via addition of their code to executable DOS files in COM format. Suriv family, is detected in the city of Jerusalem. Jerusalem caused a worldwide epidemic in 1988.
November: The SCA virus, a boot sector virus for Amiga computers appear, immediately creating a pandemic virus-writer storm. A short time later, SCA releases another, considerably more destructive virus, the Byte Bandit. December: Christmas Tree EXEC was the first widely disruptive replicating network program, which paralyzed several international computer networks in December 1987. CMS operating system and originated in what was then West Germany. MS-DOS boot sector virus, is discovered at the University of Turin in Italy. June: The CyberAIDS and Festering Hate Apple ProDOS viruses spreads from underground pirate BBS systems and starts infecting mainstream networks. Festering Hate was the last iteration of the CyberAIDS series extending back to 1985 and 1986.
October: Ghostball, the first multipartite virus, is discovered by Friðrik Skúlason. COM-files and boot sectors on MS-DOS systems. December: Several thousand floppy disks containing the AIDS Trojan, the first known ransomware, are mailed to subscribers of PC Business World magazine and a WHO AIDS conference mailing list. Mark Washburn, working on an analysis of the Vienna and Cascade viruses with Ralf Burger, develops the first family of polymorphic viruses, the Chameleon family. Chameleon series debuted with the release of 1260. June: The Form computer virus is isolated in Switzerland.
1990s it tended to be the most common virus in the wild with 20 to more than 50 per cent of reported infections. March: The Michelangelo virus was expected to create a digital apocalypse on March 6, with millions of computers having their information wiped, according to mass media hysteria surrounding the virus. Later assessments of the damage showed the aftermath to be minimal. Kelly” and “Freddy Krueger” spread quickly due to popularity of BBS and shareware distribution.
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The first Macro virus, called “Concept”, is created. DOS 16-bit based complicated polymorphic virus appeared with built-in permutation engine. Boza, the first virus designed specifically for Windows 95 files arrives. Laroux, the first Excel macro virus appears. June 2: The first version of the CIH virus appears. It is the first known virus able to erase flash ROM BIOS content.
January 20: The Happy99 worm first appeared. It invisibly attaches itself to emails, displays fireworks to hide the changes being made, and wishes the user a happy New Year. March 26: The Melissa worm was released, targeting Microsoft Word and Outlook-based systems, and creating considerable network traffic. May 5: The ILOVEYOU worm, also known as Love Letter, or VBS, or Love Bug worm, is a computer worm purportedly created by a Filipino computer science student. Written in VBScript, it infected millions of Windows computers worldwide within a few hours of its release. June 28: The Pikachu virus is believed to be the first computer virus geared at children.
It contains the character “Pikachu” from the Pokémon series, and is in the form of an e-mail titled “Pikachu Pokemon” with the message: “Pikachu is your friend. Its creator, Jan de Wit, was sentenced to 150 hours of community service. May 8: The Sadmind worm spreads by exploiting holes in both Sun Solaris and Microsoft IIS. July: The Sircam worm is released, spreading through Microsoft systems via e-mail and unprotected network shares.
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August 4: A complete re-write of the Code Red worm, Code Red II begins aggressively spreading onto Microsoft systems, primarily in China. September 18: The Nimda worm is discovered and spreads through a variety of means including vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows and backdoors left by Code Red II and Sadmind worm. October 26: The Klez worm is first identified. It exploits a vulnerability in Microsoft Internet Explorer and Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express. February 11: The Simile virus is a metamorphic computer virus written in assembly. It is capable of infecting almost all versions of Windows.
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March 7: Mylife is a computer worm that spread itself by sending malicious emails to all the contacts in Microsoft Outlook. April 2: Graybird is a trojan horse also known as Backdoor. August 12: The Blaster worm, aka the Lovesan worm, rapidly spreads by exploiting a vulnerability in system services present on Windows computers. The worm tries to remove the blaster worm and patch Windows. Microsoft systems via mail and network shares.
October 24: The Sober worm is first seen on Microsoft systems and maintains its presence until 2005 with many new variants. The simultaneous attacks on network weakpoints by the Blaster and Sobig worms cause massive damage. November 10: Agobot is a computer worm that can spread itself by exploiting vulnerabilities on Microsoft Windows. Some of the vulnerabilities are MS03-026 and MS05-039. November 20: Bolgimo is a computer worm that spread itself by exploiting a buffer overflow vulnerability at Microsoft Windows DCOM RPC Interface. January 18: Bagle is a mass-mailing worm affecting all versions of Microsoft Windows.
There were 2 variants of Bagle worm, Bagle. B was discovered on February 17, 2004. February 16: The Netsky worm is discovered. The worm spreads by email and by copying itself to folders on the local hard drive as well as on mapped network drives if available. Many variants of the Netsky worm appeared.
March 19: The Witty worm is a record-breaking worm in many regards. It was the fastest disclosure to worm, it was the first internet worm to carry a destructive payload and it spread rapidly using a pre-populated list of ground-zero hosts. June 15: Caribe or Cabir is a computer worm that is designed to infect mobile phones that run Symbian OS. It is the first computer worm that can infect mobile phones. October 12: Bifrost, also known as Bifrose, is a backdoor trojan which can infect Windows 95 through Vista.
December: Santy, the first known “webworm” is launched. It exploited a vulnerability in phpBB and used Google in order to find new targets. It infected around 40000 sites before Google filtered the search query used by the worm, preventing it from spreading. October 2005: The copy protection rootkit deliberately and surreptitiously included on music CDs sold by Sony BMG is exposed. The rootkit creates vulnerabilities on affected computers, making them susceptible to infection by worms and viruses.
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Late 2005: The Zlob Trojan, is a Trojan horse program that masquerades as a required video codec in the form of the Microsoft Windows ActiveX component. It was first detected in late 2005. January 20: The Nyxem worm was discovered. Its payload, which activates on the third of every month, starting on February 3, attempts to disable security-related and file sharing software, and destroy files of certain types, such as Microsoft Office files. Late March: Brontok variant N was found in late March. Brontok was a mass-email worm and the origin for the worm was from Indonesia. Late September: Stration or Warezov worm first discovered.
January 17: Storm Worm identified as a fast spreading email spamming threat to Microsoft systems. It begins gathering infected computers into the Storm botnet. By around June 30 it had infected 1. 7 million computers, and it had compromised between 1 and 10 million computers by September. July: Zeus is a trojan that targets Microsoft Windows to steal banking information by keystroke logging. February 17: Mocmex is a trojan, which was found in a digital photo frame in February 2008.
It was the first serious computer virus on a digital photo frame. The virus was traced back to a group in China. March 3: Torpig, also known as Sinowal and Mebroot, is a Trojan horse that affects Windows, turning off anti-virus applications. C, a hitherto-rumoured spambot-type malware with advanced rootkit capabilities, was announced to have been detected on Microsoft systems and analyzed, having been in the wild and undetected since October 2007 at the very least. A is a configurable remote access tool or trojan that exploits security flaws in Adobe Flash 9. July 31: The Koobface computer worm targets users of Facebook and Myspace. July 4: The July 2009 cyber attacks occur and the emergence of the W32.
Dozer attack the United States and South Korea. July 15: Symantec discovered Daprosy Worm. Said trojan worm is intended to steal online-game passwords in internet cafes. January: The Waledac botnet sent spam emails. In February 2010, an international group of security researchers and Microsoft took Waledac down. January: The Psyb0t worm is discovered. It is thought to be unique in that it can infect routers and high-speed modems.
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February 18: Microsoft announced that a BSoD problem on some Windows machines which was triggered by a batch of Patch Tuesday updates was caused by the Alureon Trojan. June 17: Stuxnet, a Windows Trojan, was detected. It is the first worm to attack SCADA systems. There are suggestions that it was designed to target Iranian nuclear facilities. September 9: The virus, called “here you have” or “VBMania”, is a simple Trojan horse that arrives in the inbox with the odd-but-suggestive subject line “here you have”.
The body reads “This is The Document I told you about, you can find it Here” or “This is The Free Download Sex Movies, you can find it Here”. New variants attack mobile phone banking information. Anti-Spyware 2011, a Trojan horse that attacks Windows 9x, 2000, XP, Vista, and Windows 7, posing as an anti-spyware program. It actually disables security-related process of anti-virus programs, while also blocking access to the Internet, which prevents updates. Once Morto finds an RDP-accessible system, it attempts to log into a domain or local system account named ‘Administrator’ using a number of common passwords. September 1: Duqu is a worm thought to be related to the Stuxnet worm. Used for targeted cyber espionage in Middle Eastern countries.
August 16: Shamoon is a computer virus designed to target computers running Microsoft Windows in the energy sector. Symantec, Kaspersky Lab, and Seculert announced its discovery on August 16, 2012. It employs a user-mode rootkit technique to hide and steal its victim’s information. Cryptolocker encrypts the files on a user’s hard drive, then prompts them to pay a ransom to the developer in order to receive the decryption key. In the following months, a number of copycat ransomware Trojans are also discovered. December: The Gameover ZeuS Trojan is discovered.
This type of virus steals one’s login details on popular Web sites that involve monetary transactions. It works by detecting a login page, then proceeds to inject a malicious code into the page, keystroke logging the computer user’s details. November: The Regin Trojan horse is discovered. Regin is a dropper that is primarily spread via spoofed Web pages.
Once downloaded, Regin quietly downloads extensions of itself, making it difficult to be detected via anti-virus signatures. The BASHLITE malware is leaked leading to a massive spike in DDoS attacks. Wifatch is revealed to the general public. It is found to attempt to secure devices from other more malicious malware. January: A trojan named “MEMZ” is spread. The creator, Leurak, explained that the trojan was intended as a funny joke, and warns the user that if they proceed, the computer may no longer be usable. It contains complex payloads that corrupt the system, displaying artifacts on the screen as it runs.
February: Ransomware Locky with its over 60 derivatives spread throughout Europe and infected several million computers. At the height of the spread over five thousand computers per hour were infected in Germany alone. Since its discovery, it has been found to have infected more than two dozen major banking institutions in the United States, including TD Bank, Chase, HSBC, Wells Fargo, PNC and Bank of America. September: Mirai creates headlines by launching some of the most powerful and disruptive DDoS attacks seen to date by infecting the Internet of Things. Exploits revealed in the NSA hacking toolkit leak of late 2016 were used to enable the propagation of the malware. September: The Xafecopy Trojan attacks 47 countries, affecting only Android operating systems.