The latest AVG Community Powered Threat Report has revealed that children are increasingly writing malicious software.
The report dealt with the specific case of an 11-year-old Canadian child who had written a piece of software that supposedly added money to a selected Runescape account. However, once the user had entered their log-in details, they were simply forwarded on to the malware writer.
“We have now seen a number of examples of very young individuals writing malware, including an 11-year-old from Canada. The code usually takes the form of a basic Trojan written using the .NET framework, which is easy to learn for beginners and simple to deploy via a link in an email or posted on a social media page,” said AVG’s chief technology officer, Yuval Ben-Itzhak.
“We believe these junior programmers are motivated mainly by the thrill of outwitting their peers, rather than financial gain, but it is nevertheless a disturbing and increasing trend. It is also logical to assume that at least some of those responsible will be tempted to experiment with much more serious cyber-crimes.”