CIH (computer Virus)
CIH, also known as Chernobyl or Spacefiller, is a Microsoft Windows computer virus which first emerged in 1998. It is one of the most damaging viruses, overwriting critical information on infected system drives, and more importantly, in some cases corrupting the system BIOS. The virus was created by Chen Ing-hau (陳盈豪, pinyin: Chén Yíngháo) who was a student at Tatung University in Taiwan. 60 million computers were believed to be infected by the virus internationally, resulting in an estimated $1 billion US dollars in commercial damages.
Chen claimed to have written the virus as a challenge against bold claims of antiviral efficiency by antivirus software developers. Chen stated that after the virus was spread across Tatung University by classmates, he apologized to the school and made an antivirus program available for public download; the antivirus program was co-authored with Weng Shi-hao (翁世豪), a student at Tamkang University. Prosecutors in Taiwan could not charge Chen at the time because no victims came forward with a lawsuit. These events led to new computer crime legislation in Taiwan.
The name "Chernobyl Virus" was coined some time after the virus was already well known as CIH, and refers to the complete coincidence of the payload trigger date in some variants of the virus (actually the virus creation date in 1998, to trigger exactly a year later) and the Chernobyl accident, which happened in the Ukrainian SSR on April 26, 1986.