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Overwriting virus

Overwriting virus

Overwriting virus definition

In cybersecurity, an overwriting virus is a malware that targets files and changes the original code entirely with malicious code. Unfortunately, when the virus overwrites files, recovering the original data is almost impossible. Due to that, data backups are mandatory to safeguard the sensitive information.

See also: exploit

Examples of overwriting viruses:

  • Yankee Doodle virus: The virus circulated in the early 1990s and targeted .COM files, usually overwriting their contents. It was known for a funny fact: the virus played a “Yankee Doodle” tune as its signature trait.
  • Way virus: In the early DOS system, this file infected and altered EXE files with its own codes. Not only did it damage files, but it made them unrecoverable.
  • Trivial.88.D virus: This overwriting virus infected.COM files by entirely replacing their contents with its code, rendering original programs and making them unusable.

Further reading

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