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First Computer Virus

In Money Heist Season 3, Pakistani hackers have been shown to be the best and most professional people. It reminded me that the pioneers of the history of computer viruses are also two Pakistani brothers, who are the inventors of computer viruses.

The virus was developed by two brothers, Basit Alvi and Amjad Alvi, residents of Lahore, Pakistan, Punjab, when they were 17 and 24 years old, respectively. He ran a computer software business, selling his software around 1986 by copying it to a floppy-disk. According to him, it was harmless, the purpose of which was that when someone should copy further from his floppy-disk, he could not do so. Because they knew that their work would be further copied and sold which would surely affect their business, then the virus they created, if someone copied their software. His computer system, both the copy and the original floppy, became corrupt.

It was 1986 when students at the University of Delaware in the United States began to experience strange symptoms while using a computer. Memory loss, slow drive and more. It was later discovered that behind all this was the first personal computer virus, now known as Brain, which destroyed memory, slowed the hard drive and hide a short copyright message in the boot sector.

In a 2011 interview with F-Secure, a Finnish antivirus company, the two brothers described the bug as a "friendly virus" that was not intended to "destroy any data" and therefore His name, phone number and shop address were also present.

"The idea was that if an illegal copy of the program was made, the virus would load. " Amjad Alvi said.

The two brothers also set up a mechanism to monitor the spread of the virus, which included a counter system, so that all copies could be tracked and when they were made.

He claimed that he did not know that the virus would spread so far that it would spiral out of his control, but Time Magazine published a detailed review in September 1988, and even published a magazine cover in the name of viruses. In which some complex aspects were also highlighted.

According to the magazine, the two brothers were as concerned about the theft of their software, but they themselves were selling copies of other expensive programs such as Lotus 1-2-3 and their position was also quite interesting that the computer software in Pakistan. If I do not have copyright protection then trade of boot league discs is not piracy.

Under the same pretext, the two brothers would sell clear copies to Pakistanis, while the virus-infected version would be sold to American students and tourists.

When these Americans returned home and tried to copy programs, they would infect every floppy disk they put into their computers, even disks that had nothing to do with the original program. After Delaware, the brain virus spread to other universities and then to the newspapers.

The virus proved to be a boon to the two brothers businesses. His company BrainNet is one of the few major internet services providers in Pakistan. "The virus could not have spread unless people copied the software illegally, " Alvi said in an interview.

According to the two brothers, they stopped selling the virus-infected software in 1987 and are still at the same address given on the brain code.

According to an article by TRT World, in fact, the history of computer viruses is no longer complete without Pakistani brains because it gave rise to the idea of ??writing antivirus software to most programmers, most notably the late John McAfee. He became a millionaire thanks to a virus software company, and he called his Pakistani brothers geniuses.

"I read about it in the San Jose Mercury News and thought about how they did it. No one ever thought of using software as bacteria and viruses. It was a genius idea" he said.