Different River

”You can never step in the same river twice.” –Heraclitus

January 16, 2005

Why do people write computer viruses?

Filed under: — Different River @ 3:45 pm

I’ve always wondered about this. One former virus writer — now working in the computer security industry, of course — gave this interview. But after reading it, I still don’t understand.

Q: Why did you join a virus-writing group like 29A? What is the purpose of the group?

A: The purpose of 29A has always been technical progress, invention and innovation of new and technically mature and interesting viruses. 29A distances itself from virus-spreading, since 29A always tried to act as a security group, not any cybergang, as has been portrayed in the media. 29A just wants to share ideas with others, and source code is a way of expression.

Flying planes into buildings in New York and blowing up pizza parlors in Israel are also “way[s] of expression,” but that doesn’t explain why people do those things (never mind justifying them).

People that (have known me for) some time know very well that I’ve always distanced myself from spreading (viruses) and that I never did such a stupid thing. I am not member of 29A anymore, since I try to orient myself on my work, which I like as much as virus writing.

People who make the explosive belts for suicide bombers but don’t actually deliver them are still considered terrorists, aren’t they?

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