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Trojan horse
Last modified: Friday, February 18, 2005 

A destructive program that masquerades as a benign application. Unlike viruses, Trojan horses do not replicate themselves but they can be just as destructive. One of the most insidious types of Trojan horse is a program that claims to rid your computer of viruses but instead introduces viruses onto your computer.

The term comes from the a Greek story of the Trojan War, in which the Greeks give a giant wooden horse to their foes, the Trojans, ostensibly as a peace offering. But after the Trojans drag the horse inside their city walls, Greek soldiers sneak out of the horse's hollow belly and open the city gates, allowing their compatriots to pour in and capture Troy.

Also see The Difference Between a Virus, Worm and Trojan Horse  in the Did You Know? section of Webopedia.

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eSecurity Planet 
A resource for daily information on e-security targeted to IT managers. The site provides users with information from a variety of sources, including experts at security product and services firms, and the consultants who follow the security industry.

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related categories

Ethics

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related terms

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dropper

macro virus

multipartite virus

polymorphic virus

quarantine

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stealth virus

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worm


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