Computer Virus-AntiVirus Co-evolution: A look at the evolution of algorithms and systems required to detect computer viruses

Carey Nachenberg

Chief Researcher, Symantec AntiVirus Research Center, Symantec Corp.

Over the past twenty years, computer viruses have evolved from simple computer programs capable of spreading on a single PC to complex software worms which can ravage entire computer networks. Much of the evolution of new computer virus threats has come from two major sources. First, as popular new computing platforms become available virus authors seek to exploit these platforms. Second, the co-evolution of anti-virus technology has spurred the development increasingly powerful, more complex computer virus threats.

This talk will examine the evolution of computer viruses and consider the future virus threats we are likely to encounter. In addition, it will take an in-depth look at anti-virus technologies, present and future, to better understand how our computer countermeasures will have to change to provide adequate protection against tomorrow's viruses. The talk will focus on some of the more interesting algorithms and systems which have been used or are proposed in the battle to detect and repair these increasingly complex virus threats.

Gates 498, 5/23/00, 4:15 PM