Computer viruses are the most familiar type of rogue software. A virus is a computer program that hides inside another program in a computer or on a disk drive, that attempts to propagate itself to other computers, and that often includes some destructive function (payload). This chapter discusses the main features of viruses and what makes them different from other types of software. The dictionary defines the adjective “rogue” as “large, destructive, and anomalous or unpredictable” and also as “operating outside normal or desirable controls.” Rogue software generally conforms to these definitions. It is not large, but it is virtually always destructive. It is anomalous because it replicates, and it operates outside of normal controls. This is software specifically designed, implemented, and tested to invade a computer, to replicate and spread to other computers, and to cause harm.
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Prof. David Salomon
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