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Virus-Laden Antivirus Software

Reputable antivirus company goes rogue.
  (+5, -13)(+5, -13)
(+5, -13)
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One of the antivirus software supergiants decides to add viri to their software.

The viri are heavily encrypted and lysogenic (look it up). On installation, the software randomly re-encrypts the viri to make it nearly impossible to detect.

After installation, some sort of remote activation, (similar to windoze xp) ensures the system time is globally synchronized.

The viri remain dormant for quite some time, allowing the program's reputation to grow. The company might even make the program free to use and distribute.

At some point in the future, the company decideds to go lytic. The latest antivirus update includes code telling the viri to activate at a certain time, ensuring that all the worldwide viri launch simultaniously.

One virus starts to quietly collect user data (credit cards, bank info), while another starts spamming every known internet hub, especially government servers. It leaves certain channels open however.

After enough damage to the internet has been done, a virus will start to send the entire contents of users' drives to a central database, deleting it after it sends it.

Finally, another virus starts spamming the system hardware, destroying the ram, overclocking the CPU to dangerous levels, and flashing the bios.

The creators then use all that personal data to their disgretion, amazed that they destroyed millions of computers.

--- I just realized, this is already partially baked. It's called microsoft.

Trimoor, Oct 19 2004

Lytic and lysogenic cycles http://encarta.msn...._Bacteriophage.html
How biological viruses work. [Trimoor, Oct 19 2004]


       Hmmm... unless this anti-virus software is spreading itself virally (look, honey some anti-virus software installed itself this morning) this sounds rather like a trojan horse rather than a virus. If you're going to sound pedantic, you may as well be specific.   

       I can't see the point of all the cloak and dagger stuff either. Once you've installed a piece of anti-virus software, you've already given it full contol of your machine. Why bother with all the virus-like activity. Surely that will just give the game away.   

       Ah... I get it. It's the obvious flaw in every evil genius plan... "If it wasn't for you pesky users..."
st3f, Oct 19 2004

       //this sounds rather like a trojan horse//   

       Alright, after the program become lytic, it spreads itself like any other virus.
Trimoor, Oct 19 2004

       [Brau] - Please fill me in, why is McAfee available on the mac? I thought that as there are no viruses that run on macs it would be fairly pointless.
wagster, Oct 19 2004

       stoopid. look it up. its got a wee picture of you beside it. [-]
etherman, Oct 19 2004

       Old-hat world domination plan.[-]
zen_tom, Oct 19 2004

       BrauBeaton: you were not the intended target of that barb. If it stuck in, please pull it out and throw it on. Thanks.
st3f, Oct 19 2004

       Perhaps it should be moved to business:scam. That seems like a logical place for this.   

       List it as a scam, with the intent to require users to buy more upgrades, and it may get some bunnage.
shapu, Oct 19 2004

       "I just realized, this is already partially baked. It's called microsoft."
Exactly which part of this "idea" is partially baked into XP or any other MS product for that matter? and how do the owners of the "Reputable antivirus company" plan to get away with this?
Cubical_View, Oct 19 2004

       They did essentially the same thing in the movie "The Net". Of course since it was such a bad movie, maybe most people haven't seen it. The bad guys would hack into a computer system and cause havoc, then sell their security product to fix the problem. Soon they dominated the market. Of course their security product had a nice back door that gave them full access to any computer runnning their software.
scad mientist, Oct 19 2004

       microsoft uses their products to collect personal info and induce viruses. Just look at IE--hackers have a hayday with that.   

       The reputable company would put a disclaimer that covers them in a long, rambling, cryptic EULA. That way the whole thing will be nice and legal.   

       All viral-like activity will be completely transparent until it activates. By then it will be too late.   

       I really don't see why everyone hate this. Is it because you don't think it will work, or because you don't want someone to do this?   

       It seems to me like a pretty good way to take over.
Trimoor, Oct 20 2004

       Curious how an idea which uses terms like "lysogenic (look it up)" there are still fatal flaws like "disgretion".   

       sp. discretion   

       "After enough damage to the internet has been done, a virus will start to send the entire contents of users' drives to a central database" How would this data be transferred, given that you have started your process with a major ddos attack on the very channels that you would require to transmit the data?
reap, Oct 20 2004

       “Microsoft uses their products to collect personal info and induce viruses” again I ask you which products, could you provide me with a link detailing which product collects what information? And they do not induce viruses, their software is currently the easiest to write viruses for, but they don’t encourage people to write them in the first place
As for the rambling EULA or get out of jail free card, any medium sized to large business would have people who read and understand those as part of their job.
“A good way to take over” take over what exactly, even small businesses have hardrive backups. As for the countless credit card numbers etc which this will have collected, no EULA could made it legal for you to use them.
I have about 300 gigs of stuff on my pc at the moment, and an upload speed of about 11 kb/s that means roughly a year to download the contents of my harddrive to your systems. Pretending 11 kbs is the norm for most with ~1 million pcs infected that’s a 10 gig bandwidth required to handle the incoming data.
The list of problems goes on and on, to make the idea in any remote way feasible you’d have to reduce its function to what has already been baked in the plot of the “The Net” as described by scad_scientist.
Cubical_View, Oct 20 2004

       I agree that this is a good idea and the possibility of it happening is something that gets big businesses very nervous. It's the reason that there aren't any easter eggs in new M$ software on pain of death (or sacking, I forget)
stestagg, Nov 29 2005


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