O'Reilly logo
  • Mike Tuckerman thinks this is interesting:

Types of Malware

The original email–propagated viruses, such as the circa-2000 Melissa or I Love You viruses, did not do much besides slow down the performance of your computer and your network. They soaked up bandwidth and processing power by sending copies of themselves to millions of people. This type of malware was created primarily to enable its authors to show off their “development” skills. For David Smith of New Jersey, the author of the Melissa virus, the erstwhile use of his computer skills backfired; following a tip from an AOL employee to law enforcement, Smith ended up spending 20 months in prison.

Following the success of these earlier mass-mailer viruses, a new class of malware was...