A Laptop Infected With Six World’s Most Dangerous Viruses on Auction for $1.3 Million

A Laptop Infected With Six World’s Most Dangerous Viruses on Auction for $1.3 Million

It’s a piece of art titled ‘The Persistence of Chaos’

A laptop which has deliberately been infected with six highly infectious computer viruses has attracted bids of over $1.3 million at an auction in the U.S. The 11-year-old Samsung computer is being sold as a work of art by artist Guo O Don and Deep Instinct, a New York-based security company 

It is designed to be "a kind of bestiary, a catalogue of historical threats," Guo said in the report. "It's more exciting to see the beasts in a live environment," he added. 

The six viruses in the laptop (a 10.2-inch Samsung NC10-14GB) were chosen for the magnitude of economic damage they’ve caused. They are: WannaCry, ILoveYou, MyDoom, SoBig, DarkTequila, and BlackEnergy.

The ILOVEYOU virus, a computer bug from 2000 that often appeared as a “love letter” attached to emails; and WannaCry, a ransomware attack that shut down computers in hospitals and factories around the world in 2017, and which intelligence agencies blamed on North Korea.

The most recent WannaCry caused the UK’s National Health Service the equivalent of $100 million in damages and led to the cancellation of tens of thousands of doctors’ appointments. 

The piece was commissioned by cybersecurity firm DeepInstinct, and is currently being auctioned online. You can watch a live stream of the laptop. The current bid price may seem like a lot to pay for an old laptop riddled with malware, but the creator Guo says he likes to think of the artwork as “a kind of bestiary — a catalogue of historical threats.”

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