In the present digital world, cyber attacks are anything but uncommon. People are aware of the perils of the internet and the lurking cyber threats. Viruses have existed for a long time, and they keep getting more and more advanced every day. Let us take a look at some of the most destructive malware in the history. Some of these attacks are recent while some of them happened years back. Here are the top six malware attacks in the past:-
With reference to malware, ransomware is the new kid in town. While a majority of folks can reel off names like virus, adware, and Trojan, most of them are not very informed about ransomware. Ransomware is a malicious software which encrypts the victim’s files. CryptoLocker, a ransomware Trojan, wreaked havoc from September 2013 to May 2014. It spread on Windows systems via email and was documented as the first ransomware. It would encrypt the files and ask for money. After sending the money, the victim would get the decryption money. By June 2014, the head of the group of attackers behind this malware, Evgeny Bogachev, was charged by FBI.
While ILOVEYOU seems to be a subject of an email expressing the deepest feelings of love, it is in reality way more evil than that. ILOVEYOU is a computer worm which infected thousands of computers in 2000.
This worm was a part of an email whose subject said: “I Love You.” The attachment in the mail contained malicious software. This virus was so dangerous that it even got a mention in the Guinness Book of World Record.
MyDoom garnered a lot of attention from the public and was dubbed the fastest spreading malware. The harm caused by this worm was massive. It is reported to have affected more than half a million devices across the world. A whopping 8 million emails were laced with this malicious code. It caused a lot of money to businesses. The damage reached about 250 million USD. It was detected in January 2004 and soon became the worst Windows warm in history.
Several major organizations in the West were affected by a large-scale ransomware attack dubbed Petya. When this malware infects the device, it holds the computer hostage and threatens the victim with harm by refusing them access to their data. The intruder demands a ransom in place of the hostage data. It exploited the vulnerabilities and demanded bitcoins in exchange for data.
Everybody who is even a teensy bit technologically aware must have heard about the infamous WannaCry ransomware attack. WannaCry ransomware attack was launched in May 2017. It targeted devices running Windows and infected devices all across the globe, counting to over 150 countries. Just like typical ransomware, it encrypted data and demanded payment within three days. It exploited vulnerabilities present in the operating system to conduct this activity.
6- Operation Aurora
OperationAurora was a series of cyber attacks launched by a group in the Middle Kingdom. It went undetected for a very long time. IT targeted several major organizations including tech giants Google, Yahoo, Adobe, etc. The attackers employed innovative tactics which included encryption, stealth technology, and an unknown patch in Internet Explorer.