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Thread: Can anyone tell me the diff between a worm and a virus?

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Bemidji, Minnesota

    Can anyone tell me the diff between a worm and a virus?

    It seems to me that the so called "NIMBDA VIRUS" is actually a worm. Worms can split off just as virus's do. I have noticed that places that talk about the Nimbda "virus" use worm and virus interchageably. That really pisses me off. Can anyone help tripstone out. Thanks much...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Nimda is actually both, its propogates without intervention as a worm using IIS vulnerabilities and propogates through user intervention as do virII (). It is mail-enabled as a virus, also using web pages and network shares.
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  3. #3
    Old-Fogey:Addicts founder Terr's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Seattle, WA
    Just call them whatever you want. The definition is really fuzzy.
    I THINK, originally, Viruses needed human interaction to spread (disk/swap, etc.), worms could do it automatically (network propogation, intrustion, and reproduction). But, worms use the infrastructure (network devices) that people made, so it is a person-virus interaction anyway....
    [HvC]Terr: L33T Technical Proficiency

  4. #4
    Computer Forensics
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    OK, lets take Nimda for example.

    it was a worm/virus all in one. parts of it were the virus, the other parts were the worm.

    A virus needs a carrier in order to be delivered. Hence the worm.
    worms, by themselves are relatively harmless, its usually the payload(virus) that does the damage. the worm does the traversal and spreading, copying etc, the virus is that nice little destructive part once the worm finds its target. the part that replaces and deletes files or infects the .exe's.

    Taken from :
    However, by using the W32.Nimda.A@mm worm as a delivery mechanism, the attacker is able to compromise a vulnerable IIS server remotely..............

    simply put : a virus infects......A worm crawls or spreads.
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  5. #5
    virus reproduces, usually without your permission or knowledge. In general terms they have an infection phase where they reproduce widely and an attack phase where they do whatever damage they are programmed to do (if any). There are a large number of virus types.

    or u can also say that a virus is a program that reproduces its own code by attaching itself to other executable files in such a way that the virus code is executed when the infected executable file is executed.

    There are three more types of software threats which include

    Logic Bombs

    A worm is a self-reproducing program that does not infect other programs as a virus will, but instead creates copies of itself, that create even more copies.

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