by Mike Masnick

Good Worm? Bad Idea

from the of-course-it-is dept

A few weeks ago I heard a few people suggesting the idea of a "good worm". That is a computer worm that goes around automatically from machine to machine and gets rid of bad worms, trojan horses and viruses. This seemed like an absolutely awful idea, because the probability of this "good worm" doing something terrible is pretty high. There's no way to predict what it'll do, and it's pretty likely to turn bad very quickly. Of course, someone apparently released such a "good worm", but it's really just a trick. That good worm isn't even remotely good, and is probably just as bad as other worms. They also have a bunch of computer experts pointing out that the whole good worm idea is a terrible one.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    mhh5, Aug 24th, 2001 @ 1:33pm

    that's just a bad marketing idea...

    McAfee VirusScan is basically a "good worm" but no one thinks of it that way. And a lot of people think Windoze is a "bad worm" too...
    The only difference b/t a worm and an application is whether or not you voluntarily installed it??

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Phillip, Aug 25th, 2001 @ 9:40am

    It has been done before

    I remember a good worm being written before. It went around patching machines and leaving a message saying what had been fixed. Had some limited success I think. You are incorrect in saying "someone apparently released such a 'good worm' as it was in fact a trojan. A worm is self-propagating (hence VirusScan isn't a worm either). And I doubt any worm can "turn bad" as it's static code, it doesn't evolve. Finally the argument that you can turn the worm into a malicious one is FUD, as you may as well write a malicious one from scratch (probably easier). Love all the virus 'experts' putting the idea down to save their jobs though.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    ellis, Aug 26th, 2001 @ 3:07pm

    Not a new Idea..

    This isn't a new idea. I had this idea about year ago or more. I posted about it on the Geeknews.com forums. Basically my idea was to update mircosoft windows library files with hack versions that were more stable and such. =)

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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