Kaspersky Lab releases a new article about the evolution of malicious programs and antivirus software

17 Apr 2008
Virus News

Kaspersky Lab, a leading developer of secure content management solutions, has released its latest article, entitled ‘Changing Threats, Changing Solutions: A History of Viruses and Antivirus’. The article is authored by David Emm, the company’s senior technology consultant.

The article provides an overview of the changing threat landscape from the late 1980s, when the first PC viruses appeared, to the evolution of mobile threats in the first decade of the 21st century. It also examines how antivirus solutions have evolved to keep pace with the changes in malicious code by implementing new technologies.

The author analyzes a shift in the motivation of virus writers: from writing and spreading malicious code simply to cause damage, to doing so in order to earn money illegally. A consequence of this shift is the decline in global epidemics since 2003, and a rise in tailor-made Trojans designed to target a specific system and malicious programs designed to steal user data such as logins and passwords for bank accounts and online games.

David Emm discusses the role of mobile threats in today’s threat landscape: since the first worm for smartphones was detected in 2004, new viruses, worms and Trojans for mobile devices have also emerged. In the space of a few years, threats for mobile devices have evolved as much as PC malware did over the course of 20 years.

The author concludes by emphasizing that the threat landscape has changed beyond recognition, making it more important than ever for users to have effective protection. Security solutions must deliver timely protection against the hundreds of new threats which appear daily, while also implementing technologies which can block unknown threats as they appear.

The complete article can be found on Viruslist.com. The Executive Summary is available on the Kaspersky Lab corporate website.