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The History of Computer Viruses and What They’ve Become

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Thirty years ago, the world’s first computer virus was born. “Brain.A,” as it’s called today, was fairly innocuous. It basically slowed down your computer and made large chunks of information on your hard drive inaccessible. The concept of a computer virus was so novel at the time that virus-makers left a calling card within their virus’ code. While something like “Brain.A” might be problematic if it were to infect your work computer, it pales in comparison to the computer viruses of today. Given how ubiquitous the internet has become in our daily lives, these new viruses have dangerous potential.

In a TED Talk given in 2011, computer security expert Mikko Hypponen details the history of computer viruses and the importance of stopping their evolution before its too late.