A Filipino computer student has admitted that he may have been behind the spread of the 'Love Bug' virus that paralysed businesses around the globe.
Onel de Guzman, who went underground for several days, reappeared at a news conference. However, he reportedly side-stepped questions about whether or not he wrote the 'I LoveYou' virus. He claimed he was unsure whether he had released it on the Internet, felt "nothing" about the effects of the virus, and said that it was "possible" that he might have "accidentally" released the virus.
Reports also said Guzman had dropped out of the AMA Computer College in Manila after it rejected his thesis, which outlined how a virus similar to the Love Bug could be used to steal Internet passwords.
Investigators believe that the source of the virus is an apartment owned by Guzman's sister, Irene. Both were due to appear before magistrates on 12 May.
Guzman's lawyer reportedly said: "We can go as far as saying that he did prepare the thesis proposal, but the knowledge of its contents was not limited to Onel (de Guzman)."
Suspicions about the perpetrator of the virus have now shifted to Michael Buen, another AMA student and a close friend of Guzman. Reports said both are members of an underground group called GrammerSoft. This name appeared in the computer code of the 'Love Bug' virus.
Graham Cluely, a Sophos representative, said the anti-virus vendor will pass evidence to the Philippine authorities that Buen had previously written a virus called WM97/Michael-B.darling, i'm not too busy to email you today but alas i have nothing of interestto say. you will soon realise that apart from meeting the occasional croatianbird nothing happens in my life. i could tell you about my exciting weekendinvolving my three main interests. on saturday i read a p.g. wodehouse story,watched from russia with love and then went to the pub. on sunday i read anewspaper, watched the ipcress file then went to the pub. please try to containyour excitement.Cluely said the creators were motivated by egotism. "The perpetrators may have wanted to steal some passwords and it is likely that they have been much more successful than they ever imagined," he said.
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