Why do People Make Computer Viruses, Malware and Spyware?

Most people know someone that has encountered a computer virus if they haven't experienced it themselves. It doesn't take much to recall the anger and loss of privacy that characterize these situations. Who has not asked the question why do people make viruses? In the past, people tended to picture virus writers as these pale losers who hunched over computers in basements and generally lacked self-esteem. While this may have been true at the start, today the reasons people make malware and spyware seem to have more practical applications than simply feeling the rush of power. Here are a few common reasons behind this.


What with the way people look for ways to make money online, It shouldn't be too much of a surprise to realize that writers of viruses would be looking for online options as well. Malware and spyware make it possible for an unscrupulous person to make money with less work. One of the more common ways for a person to make money writing viruses is by writing a program that masquerades as legitimate computer protection. People become alarmed at the number of detected viruses set up on their machines and buy the program that does nothing and continually needs to be renewed.

Steal Information

Identity theft is another motive for writing viruses. By swiping financial and other information, a virus writer can steal the information of a computer owner. It's essentially a more technologically sophisticated method of watching for someone's pin number and taking their card. Regardless of the reasons that a virus writer would want the information is another story, but simply by having the information a virus writer can learn more about you than you would like.

Controlling a Computer

Mostly for spamming purposes that can have roundabout financial applications. These programs will take a computer and set it up so that the writer has control over the computer and several hundred or thousand other. For a website that is able to protect itself very well in terms of hacking, the idea is to instead overload its servers. By taking over hundreds and thousands of computers, it is possible to have all of them try to access a site at once and by extension take it down. Other viruses won't have this approach but will control the computers by having them send spam.

Because It's Possible

Sadly, there are some people around who try to make life difficult for others simply because they can. It's annoying. It's inconvenient. But it's also true. This individual is most like the common picture of a virus writer that exists in the popular mind. It's not about a purpose but it's about proving that it can be done. This writer will use all of the above methods in terms of what approach they will take. Fortunately this type of virus writer appears to be becoming more and more of an endangered species.

A virus infection is a stressful thing to have happen. Especially when you consider the extent to which we depend on our computers everyday. The reasons people make viruses are generally based on personal gain and unfortunately malware and spyware have gotten past being mild annoyances to computer users. Even though the day of the loser appears to have given way in favor of making profit, the methods and approaches still essentially work the same and computer users should remain on guard.

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