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Curious Yellow: The First Coordinated Worm Design

Brandon Wiley
2002

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Abstract

The Warhol worm design began the theoretical discussion of so-called "superworms", a new type of computer worms. A worm is a computer program which copies itself from computer to computer in an attempt to reproduce as much as possible. A superworm uses more advanced techniques to achieve very quick infection of the network. The primary strategy behind the Warhol superworm is to pre-scan the network for vulnerable targets. When the worm is launched it already has a large list of targets with a known method for infection and can therefore quickly infect an initial seed population.

One thing which the Warhol paper mentions is that better results might be achieved via a coordinated worm in which various instances of the worm on different computers communicate with each other in order to optimize infection. The Warhol paper states, however, that no coordinated worm has ever been created. This paper proposes the first design for a worm which utilizes efficient communication between worm instances for an optimal infection strategy.

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