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Commensal computer virus

Anti-virus virus
  [vote for,

The Klez virus remains at large at my institution. I was pondering the fact that most viruses either do nothing and simply propagate, or cause havok and ruin.

What if there were a virus which spread in exactly the same way as Klez, and when it encountered the real (destructive) Klez it would wipe it out? The antivirus could only take up residence in computers without effective antivirus software - the same ones that are susceptible to Klez. It would effectively suppress the level of Klez at large.

This strategy could be used to construct emergency "firebreaks" to contain outbreaks of new, potent viruses such as Melissa. When the outbreak begins, the new virus would be dissected and its mode of propagation copied - a mode which presumably overcomes any extant antivirus measures. An antivirus is devised which propagates in this way, and is released through many established portals. As the antivirus spread, it would cut off new routes of propagation for the new virus. This could hold the line until antivirus software could be updated.

bungston, Dec 03 2002

http://www.halfbake.../Tinkerbell_20Virus http://www.halfbake.../Tinkerbell_20Virus
The Nachi worm uses the same vulerabilities that MS-Blast and other worms use, and then it patches them and removes the MS-Blast worm. The Nachi worm will self destruct on 1/1/2004 [bungston, Oct 05 2004]

Baked http://vil.nai.com/...ontent/v_100559.htm
The Nachi worm uses the same vulerabilities that MS-Blast and other worms use, and then it patches them and removes the MS-Blast worm. The Nachi worm will self destruct on 1/1/2004 [mwburden, Oct 05 2004]

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       This sounds kind of like the Total Information Awareness crowd. Set a crook to catch a crook. Cure worse than disease. The power's out there and it's not yours.
Admiral Hackbar, Dec 03 2002

       Wow, Hackbar, you can really post better annotations than you usually let on. And you didn't even use the word "banana". <grin>
krelnik, Dec 03 2002

       This pig has flown
thumbwax, Dec 03 2002

       It wouldn't be long until some bright spark coded a virus that acted, behaved and otherwise was this 'anti-virus virus'. Instead of doing its proper job however, it would be more like the John Hurt character from 'Alien', just waiting to do damage.   

       On saying that though, with the work I have seen on 'software agents', this may be a possible route to take when tackling viruses (just not one I like, a la Admiral Hackbar).
Jinbish, Dec 04 2002

       I am severely bummed that Juttas long annotation to this idea has disappeared. It was better than the idea itself, and set in motion several other trains of thought.   

       As re concerns: 1: Klez is the example. The principle holds for any virus. 2: John Hurt - and this addresses some concerns that the linked articles address. If a person has to open the door to let in the helper virus, it could be abused. The helper should get in without permission, the same way that its target virus does. Antivirus software effective against the evil virus would also keep out its good twin.
bungston, Dec 04 2002

       Reminds me of the VCIDS virus from Tracy Hickman's "The Immortals". Granted, that was a disease virus designed to counteract AIDS, but the principle is the same. Unfortunately, so are the risks for the whole thing going FUBAR in two clicks. Top Cat's dinner for you.
Pharaoh Mobius, Dec 04 2002

       Anyone tried Knoppix? It is a complete Linux system permanently fried onto a CD ROM, and therefore untouchable by viruses. Only user data resides on the hard disk.   

       Why doesn't Windows produce a similar OS package-on-a-CD
Cockroach2, Aug 23 2003


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