Logically, creating a malicious virus should be illegal. In reality, a law must exist before it can be
broken and enforced. The US Patriot Act (sec 814) offers punishment for those who damage or gain
unauthorized access to a protected computer, causing financial or medical damages.
In most countries, it is NOT ILLEGAL to create a computer virus, but it is illegal to spread a computer
virus. This puts nearly anyone at risk of breaking the law. Legally, ignorance does not usually qualify
as a valid excuse.
The nature of law requires very specific wording, and the agreement of lots of people. This takes time.
Unfortunately, a computer virus can be written and passed much quicker than any law (that contest is
Occasionally, an infected computer (zombie computer) has inadvertently gotten the computer user
convicted for illegal content
(see Connecticut v. Amero)
Proving illegal content can be simple, compared to determining its actual source. The burden of proof
then lies with the defendant, having to find the real culprit. An undetectable virus today, might be
easy to catch next year, so updating is extremely important.
You bought YOUR computer to serve YOUR needs
but, Virus makers want YOUR computer to serve THEIR needs
Even if the person creating the illegal virus is convicted, it may not help us much. Most virus creators
simply do not have anywhere near enough resources to pay for the damages they have perpetrated.
Sometimes this can be billions of dollars. Besides, most of the damages collected are in excess of
The internet is international, so the laws protecting us from internet destruction must also be
international. Not all countries use computers as much as the USA. In many cases, it really isn't their
top priority to solve our computer problems. Note that about 30% of people on earth have never even
seen a telephone!
Virus programs are designed to infect you, then spread themselves through your computer. Since spreading
a virus is against the law, it would be irresponsible not to protect ourselves from getting a virus.
Complete Internet Security To Safely Work and Play
You require a worry-free online experience to safely surf, e-mail, search, download,
bank, socialize and shop. Internet Security provides multiple layers of defense. Be
safe from Viruses, Adware, Spyware, Spam E-mail, Identity Theft and Firewall
Attacks. It even warns you before unintentionally visiting a harmful web site.