Why do hackers create computer viruses? What's their motive?

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Winston
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Why do hackers create computer viruses? What's their motive?

Post by Winston »

Why do hackers create computer viruses constantly as though it were some kind of business to them? What's the gain or motive? What's in it for them? It makes no sense.

Why don't they put their skills into creating something to sell to make money, or working as a computer programmer or software engineer and getting paid?

Odbo, is there any conspiracy behind this? Why can't law enforcement just stop the problem for good and arrest all the perpetrators?
Last edited by Winston on January 19th, 2012, 7:25 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Think Different
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Post by Think Different »

Years ago, there was a rumor going around that the anti-virus software companies were creating the viruses in order to create a permanent base of buyers. In reality, it's mainly Chinese and East European hackers creating them. The Chinese do it to disrupt the West (often at the behest of the Chinese government), and the East Europeans I think because they have an in-born need to "beat the system". I saw this in Russia all the time (and in Italy, too...). They spent all their energy trying to "beat the system" instead of using that energy to create a better society. I still struggle to understand what drives that mentality, but perhaps its a form of passive-agressive behavior, due to centuries of abuse from the powers-that-be above them. It is typical behavior of those who feel they are victims of fate/life/society/etc. and it's the only way they know how to fight back at their perceived tormentors.
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Winston
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Post by Winston »

Chinese people don't usually do things out of revenge though, or make a career out of it. They are very productive and don't like to waste their time. So that would be odd. But if someone had the skills to create computer viruses, then why wouldn't they put those skills to use and get a job as a computer programmer or software engineer?
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somedude
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Post by somedude »

Most (but not all) of them are to do with money and greed, eg most trojans/malware/viruses are creating revenue streams for those that control them. Either by using the infected machines as zombie farms for sending spam, or generating/botting clicks through pay per click advertising portals.

The reason they cause so much grief is because they are very poor programmers (in fact most of them aren't and mish mash code together until they get something barely working) and as a result the crap code produced wreaks more havoc on a system rather than running silently and undetected.

Unfortunately as most things in life, follow the trail of greed.
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HouseMD
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Post by HouseMD »

The purpose is chaos. It's trolling on the grandest of scales, a beautiful expression of how the smallest of things can obliterate massive pieces of infrastructure. A hacker does what he does because he can, basically. There is a certain joy to seeing how much you can destroy on a whim, a thrill in knowing what power you hold.
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HouseMD
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Post by HouseMD »

somedude wrote:Most (but not all) of them are to do with money and greed, eg most trojans/malware/viruses are creating revenue streams for those that control them. Either by using the infected machines as zombie farms for sending spam, or generating/botting clicks through pay per click advertising portals.

The reason they cause so much grief is because they are very poor programmers (in fact most of them aren't and mish mash code together until they get something barely working) and as a result the crap code produced wreaks more havoc on a system rather than running silently and undetected.

Unfortunately as most things in life, follow the trail of greed.
Most of the most proliferative viruses have not been revenue generating. They were either designed to spread endlessly or designed to create DDoS botnets. There are some revenue generators out there, but that stuff is usually popup style malware and not true viruses. Malware is reprehensible.
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Post by TheLegendSeeker »

Money is their motivation and keep in mind that the same people who create virus are the ones who create anti-virus.
MrPeabody
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Post by MrPeabody »

They use to do it for a technical challenge, but now it is just about the money. The new viruses are being constructed by an underground network of organized crime.

One of the most sophisticated viruses was constructed by the US government and Israel. We don't know about what the NSA has come up with.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stuxnet
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