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Word Count: 790
Computer Viruses The quote The only truly secure system is one that is powered off cast in a lead-lined room with armed guards and even then I have my doubtsEH Spafford of this report will explain how computer viruses have affected on society and the security of personal computers There literally hundreds of viruses circulating for personal computers and many anti-viral packages that claim to remove the code from your computer Some viruses are polymorphic that is they change with each infection in an attempt to avoid detection by anti-virus programs As quickly as someone writes an anti-virus program someone else writes a new virus that hides more successfully than in the past Do to the harshness of some viruses people have devised methods of detecting and removing them The anti-viral programs will scan the entire hard drive looking for evidence that viruses may have infected it These programs must be told very specifically what to look for on the hard drive There are two main methods of detecting viruses on a computer The first is to compare all of the viruses on the hard disk to known types of viruses While this method is very accurate it can be made totally useless when dealing with a new and previously unknown virus The other method is the way in which a common cloning virus adapts All that a cloning virus really does is look at what operations the computer is executing and reacts and adapts to them by making more copies of it This is the serious mistake with cloning viruses all the copies of itself look the same Basically all data in a computer is stored in a byte structure format These bytes which are similar to symbols occur in specific orders and lengths Each of the cloned viruses has the same order and length of the byte structure All that the anti-virus program has to do is scan
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