The Logic Bomb

A “logic bomb” is malware that is activated in response to an event — for example, a user launching an application, visiting a target website, or upon the occurrence of a certain date (in this case, it is called a “time bomb”).

There are two main types of logic bomb. The first is when it is integrated into a virus complex, for example, with a Trojan and a keylogger. The user first downloads a Trojan that installs a keylogger and a “logic bomb”. As soon as the victim visits the desired site, where it is required to enter personal data (login, password, card number, etc.), the logic bomb launches a keylogger. He, in turn, reads the keystrokes and sends the information to the customer.

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The second popular type of logic bomb is the code embedded in the official program, which runs according to the script laid down by the developer. A recent example is the sensational case of David Tinley, a programmer—contractor at Siemens, who was convicted of fraud with a “logic bomb”. The programmer developed complex Excel spreadsheets, with which the company solved some of its CRM tasks. The tables started working with errors at a certain point, and Siemens had no choice but to contact Tinley for a paid service. As a result, the programmer was accused of deliberate sabotage.

Some mobile device manufacturers act in a similar way, using a logic bomb of the “planned obsolescence” type — so that customers buy new versions of gadgets.

The sources of infection are the same as those of ordinary viruses: email attachments, infected sites, keygens for “cracked” utilities, etc. They can be embedded in official software, activating under specified conditions or upon the occurrence of a certain date.

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