Modern malware is emerging as one of the most concerning forces at play in information technology. With the ability to potentially coordinate millions of infected nodes, pass through security boundaries undetected on demand, and to adapt functionality on demand, modern malware has more in common with a fully distributed cloud-based application than it does with the simple self-replicating viruses and worms that we have known in the past.
40 years ago while working at BBN, Bob Thomas began experimenting with the concept of a mobile application. To this end he developed the Creeper program, which had the ability to move from machine to machine. Creeper quickly proliferated through ARPANET infecting everything in its path, and the emergence of the computer virus was upon us.
Given the evolution of malware, it is important that we look at more than simply the function of the malware (i.e. a banking botnet). It's just as important to understand how malware protects itself, communicates and foils our existing defense in depth.