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Virus Encyclopedia

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Chernobyl

 
Threat LevelHigh threatDamageSevereDistributionNot widespread
Common name:Chernobyl
Technical name:W95/CIH
Threat level:Medium
Alias:CIH, PE/CIH; CIH.C; CIHV; WIN95.CIH; W95/CIH; W95/CIH.1003; W95/CIH-10xx; CHERNOBYL; TSHERNOBYL; SPACEFIL; CIH.1019
Type:Virus
Effects:  It deletes the content of the hard disk, preventing the computer from starting. It deletes boot information from the BIOS.

Affected platforms:

Windows 95

First detected on:Aug. 6, 1998
Detection updated on:March 17, 2006
StatisticsNo
Proactive protection:
Yes, using TruPrevent Technologies
Family:VALENTIN

Brief Description 

    

Chernobyl is a resident virus that activates every April 26. It was given this name because the date coincides with the commemoration of the nuclear disaster that took place in Chernobyl in 1986.

This virus is extremely dangerous, as it deletes the content of the hard disk, preventing Windows NT, Windows 98 or Windows 95 computers from starting up. It also infects files with an EXE extension, but only in Windows 98 and Windows 95 computers.

In computers with an Intel Pentium microprocessor, it deletes the content of the BIOS.

In order to spread it uses several means of transmission, but it does not use a specific method.

Visible Symptoms 

    

After Chernobyl has infected a computer, various symptoms can be noticed:

  • When the computer is started up, the following message is displayed:

    "DISK BOOT FAILURE, INSERT SYSTEM DISK AND PRESS ENTER"
    This message indicates that the computer cannot be started. The reason for this is that Chernobyl has formatted the hard disk.
  • If the computer is booted from another disk and then the C:/ drive is accessed, the following warning is displayed:

    "INVALID DRIVE SPECIFICATION"
    This means that the system does not recognize the hard disk because it is completely blank.

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