`What are the chances of you buying a laptop infested with some of the world's deadliest viruses for $1 million? Zero? We thought so, but there are others who live life on the edge of the internet. An 'internet artist' has created a machine infested with six of the world's deadliest viruses and the current bidding price of that machine is around $1.2 million!
The artist, Guo O Dong, has taken an ordinary 10.2-inch Samsung NC10-14GB laptop running on Windows XP (SP3) and dubbed it 'The Persistance of Chaos'. The laptop is loaded with six of the world's deadliest viruses responsible for causing financial damages totalling $95 billion! The piece of art weighs 2.8lbs and comes with a power cord and restart script. According to the auction page, thepersistenceofchaos, the six pieces of malware included in the laptop are:
The ILOVEYOU virus, disseminated via email and file sharing networks, affected 500,000+ systems and caused $15 billion in damages total, with $5.5 billion in damages caused in the first week.
MyDoom, potentially custom-built by Russian e-mail spammers, was one of the fastest spreading worms. It's projected that this virus caused $38 billion in damages.
SoBig was a worm and trojan that circulated through emails as viral spam. This piece of malware could copy files, email itself to others, and could damage computer software/hardware. This piece of malware caused $37 billion in damages and affected hundreds of thousands of PCs.
WannaCry was an extremely virulent ransomware cryptoworm that also set up backdoors on systems. The attack affected 200,000+ computers across 150 countries, and caused the National Health Service in England $100 million in damages with further totals accumulating close to $4 billion.
A sophisticated and evasive piece of malware that targeted users mainly in Latin America, DarkTequila stole bank credentials and corporate data even while offline. DarkTequila costed millions in damages across many users.
BlackEnergy 2 uses sophisticated rootkit/process-injection techniques, robust encryption, and a modular architecture known as a "dropper". BlackEnergy was used in a cyberattack that prompted a large-scale blackout in Ukraine in December 2015.
The laptop has been isolated and airgapped to prevent against the spread of the malware. The bid's Terms and Conditions states that "You should not and undertake not to disseminate any malware included in the Work of Art in any manner. You agree not to connect the work of art to any computer Network."
Speaking to The Verge, artist Guo O Dong said that the intention behind creating such a laptop was to turn the digital abstract threats more physical.
"We have this fantasy that things that happen in computers can't actually affect us, but this is absurd", Guo said. "Weaponized viruses that affect power grids or public infrastructure can cause direct harm."
Edited By: Udit Verma