Lahore – The first Computer Virus

The Brain boot sector virus (aka Pakistani flu) was released in 1986. Brain is considered the first IBM PC compatible virus, and the program responsible for the first IBM PC compatible virus epidemic. The virus is also known as Lahore, Pakistani, Pakistani Brain, as it was created in Lahore, Pakistan by 19 year old Pakistani programmer, Basit Farooq Alvi, and his brother, Amjad Farooq Alvi.

The brothers claimed that they only intended to infect IBM PCs running bootleg copies of a heart-monitoring program they created. The virus included a copyright notice with the brothers’ names and phone numbers so that people whose computers were infected could contact the brothers to obtain a “vaccination.” Numerous variations of Brain followed.

Welcome to the Dungeon © 1986 Basit * Amjad (pvt) Ltd. BRAIN COMPUTER SERVICES 730 NIZAM BLOCK ALLAMA IQBAL TOWN LAHORE-PAKISTAN PHONE: 430791,443248,280530. Beware of this VIRUS.... Contact us for vaccination...

When the brothers began to receive a large number of phone calls from people in United States, United Kingdom, and elsewhere, demanding them to disinfect their machines, the brothers were stunned and tried to explain to the outraged callers that their motivation had not been malicious. They ended up having to get their phone lines cut off and regretted that they had revealed their contact info in the first place. The brothers are still in business in Pakistan as Internet service providers with a company called Brain Limited where the program may still be in use to track copies of Apple //e heart monitoring software.




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