In 2017, the computer virus “WannaCry” put the world’s biggest companies under siege and made home internet users tremble in fear. It took advantage of a weakness in Windows to make an attack that disabled devices and demanded large sums of money in exchange for their release. The fact, of course, became known all over the planet and threw into question the internet’s security systems.
Despite this, there are many occasions when false alarms are created surrounding circulating viruses on the net. It is true that there will always be risk, but one must work hard to dispel the unfounded rumors.
The origin of the computer virus goes back many years, to 1972, when it attacked the operating system Tenex, present in American computers that were being used for the research and teaching. Its name was “Creeper” and was created, without malicious intentions, by an engineer named Bob Thomas. The virus circulated on the Internet always sending out the same message: “I’m the Creeper, catch me if you can.”
In order to combat it “Reaper” was created, considered the first antivirus in history. In the 80s the first malicious viruses emerged. Since that moment, hundreds of viruses have emerged, some of them very aggressive. Although it is difficult to decide which has been the worst in history, many experts point to “Chernobyl“, a virus created in 1998 that attacked 60 million computers operating on Windows and Millenium. It erased all data from the devices and prevented it from being put into operation.
Classes of viruses
One of the first malicious viruses was “Rabbit“, which blocked devices. Then “Elk Cloner”, affecting Apple, and finally “Brain”, which appeared on IBM computers. From here a list of computer viruses was created:
Other types of secondary viruses
How do we protect ourselves?
The best way to protect ourselves is to install an antivirus, but we have to realize that the system has mechanisms to protect itself. This is the case of Windows Defender or Windows Security. There are also other free antiviruses like Avast or Kaspersky.
They may look like simple programs, but they are very effective in destroying Trojans, worms or spyware. It’s true you have to be aware of new updates. In addition to antivirus, there are other ways to prevent our devices from becoming victims of viruses:
False legends surrounding viruses
Threats in 2018
The National Cybersecurity Institute of Spain estimates that last year there were more than 120,000 computer attacks counted in our country, most of them against businesses. Among the most dangerous of 2018 are Confiker, Zeus, Viari… viruses that steal information and bank passwords.