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7 Impact on IT system by Virus ?

virus :

The damage caused by viruses and worms can be divided into two categories:

1) intentional damage
2) unintentional damage.

Intentional damage, or harmless effects, is caused explicitly by the payload routine. Unintentional damage may be caused as a side effect when the virus replicates.

Impact On IT system :

1. Harmless effects

These effects are always produced by the payload routine, but they are not malicious. The effect may be a picture, animations or video, music or sounds, interactive functions, political messages etc. These effects usually give you an idea about the virus author’s way of thinking, age or nationality. These effects may be funny or annoying and may distract or disturb the user, but they do not
cause any permanent damage.

2. Compatibility problems

Individuals make viruses and worms and they do not have resources to test their creations on a wide range of computer systems. Nor do they develop the viruses according to quality control systems and guidelines. This makes it likely that they cause compatibility problems when run on systems that differ from the one on which they were developed. These problems can occur as error messages, crashes, inability to access certain functions etc. These problems are grouped as unintentional damage.

3.Granting unauthorized access

Viruses may plant back doors in the system, or steal passwords. These functionscan later be used by hackers to access the system. Damage caused by such hacking activities is hard to predict. Unauthorized usage of the system may, for example, continue unnoticed for a long time.

4. Disclosure of confidential data

Viruses and worms have access to the same communication methods as the user,and even use them to replicate. A payload routine may easily locate documents that match certain criteria and send them to anyone on the Internet. Some email worms also cause disclosure of data as a part of replication. The worms that replicate when attached to a document, such as Melissa, send this document to recipients to whom the user had no intention of sending the document.

5. Computer resource usage

Viruses and worms can disturb computer systems by spending resources, either intentionally or unintentionally. Some viruses contain payloads that deliberately eat system resources, but resource consumption is probably unintentional in most cases. Unintentional resource consumption may be caused by errors in the virus or the replication.

Code Red is an example of this. Searching for new hosts to spread to requires both network traffic and CPU resources. This load was obvious in the slower response time from the infected web servers or even in the total inability to serve users.

Another type of intentional resource usage is known as denial-of-service or DOS. This is typically performed using distributed technology where a large number of computers run so-called ‘zombies’. All these zombies are programmed to connect to the same computer simultaneously. This does not significantly harm the systems that run the zombies, but the target system is usually blocked due to an overloaded Internet connection.

6. Human resource usage

Cleaning virus infections means extra work for the IT support staff. This damage, and the downtime for the user, may result in great expense unless the viruses are stopped properly using anti-virus software.Even if viruses are successfully stopped using anti-virus software, the cost of
maintaining this system may be seen as a cost caused by viruses.

7. PR aspects

The attitude towards viruses is negative. The problem is well known and all business users know the severity. Sending a virus to a customer or business partner is not good for the company’s image. This may be especially dangerous if the incident makes it to the headlines. This is not at all impossible, especially if the virus was included in a mass-produced software product.

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