In 1988, Computer Viruses Were 'Just A Call Away', Made By 'Dark Geniuses'

These days, viruses are part and parcel of using the internet. In 1988? Not so much. I'm not sure what's more hilarious: the overly dramatic delivery of this media report from that year, talking about the damage caused by the Morris worm, or that fact the "worm" wasn't designed with destruction in mind. In fact, its purpose was purely educational.

The worm's creator, Robert Tappan Morris, wrote it two decades ago to — reportedly — determine how large the internet was. It proved to be incredibly prolific, so much so it brought many of the systems it "infected" to their knees. Getting rid of it proved a costly exercise, with the cost of removal estimated at between $US500-$US53,000 — per machine.

Given the lack of public knowledge in 1988 of exactly how the internet (and computers) work, I imagine such sensational talk of viruses might have caused some confusion over their ability to infect people too. The fact the reporter in the video above declares viruses as being "just a call away", probably didn't help matters...

[YouTube, via Reddit]

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