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Old 04-28-2006, 04:30 AM   #2
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Join Date: May 2001
Location: UK
Posts: 822

Interesting point. I'm not really surprised that spyware is overtaking virus development to be honest. The people making the spyware get a direct financial award by defrauding those they 'infect' which is quite an incentive for some people. In contrast, virus writers tend to just either claim to be showing what they can do or cuase chaos - more of a powe-trip I suppose.

I think man is a rational animal. There is nothing irrational about defrauding someone or stealing from them for easy money - their cost-benefit analysis simply came to the conclusion that the money they would 'earn' from infecting people with spyware was worth more to them personally than the risk of being prosecuted or being amoral (which is something defined by society anyway, and not something on a primal level).

In the same way, virus writers' cost-benefit analysis come to the conlusion that the infamy and power they would get from infecting thousands of computers was more important to them personally than the risk of prosecution or the annoyance (and often financial damage) they cause.

It is quite possible to be rational and immoral acts. Indeed, it is common for criminals to 'rationalise' their crime, so they can explain why they stole something (or worse) in a way that normally makes them out as a victim of society or similar.

Just my 2p (with a little simple psychology rolled in)

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