Chrome in the Shadows
Reaper Virus Defeated
Traditional methods of combating computer viruses do not work on Reaper. Each time a countermeasure is found, the virus adapts to avoid it. On several occasions the virus appears to have been defeated only to reappear later. It wasn’t until Virologists from the CDC were brought in that a true understanding of Reaper was achieved.
They determined that the software was behaving and evolving like a real virus, but at a much faster rate. The mutations were not random, but ordered and controlled. The software also exhibit some degree of intelligence as it would hide itself when faced with a threat it could not easily overcome, find an answer and then reappear on the Net. Its rate of change meant that traditional means of software development could not respond fast enough or aggressively enough to defeat the virus.
Over the previous decade, researchers had developed a neural interface that allowed subjects to perform basic control of systems. The first generation that could allow a person to interact with a computer only worked for a few moments and the user had to concentrate. The second generation overcame many of those limitations, but the delay made it slower than an individual typing. The breakthrough came when scientists figured out a means of translating a user’s thoughts into action directly. So instead of replacing a traditional keyboard, mouse or other device to replicate the ability to control the computer, the user could in essence think of something and have the computer do it. By 2021 a working model was available and many thought it could be the solution.
The device required a user to be placed in a sensory isolation tank, to help the interface filter out random thoughts and prevent distraction. The interface was not without risk. The mental strain of using it could cause a synaptic overload, which would cause damage to the brain or in severe cases kill the user outright. After a selection process that included batteries of tests, deep brain scans, and other means to ensure that the individual had the best chance to survive seven candidates are selected and trained to use the third generation neural interface. It is the first time the interfaces are used outside the lab. The seven use the interfaces to enter the web and eradicate the Reaper Virus. During the 48 hours it takes them to track down and destroy it, the virus kills three members of the team. While hunting and destroying the virus, the team is able to enter any system and gain access to anything that is connected to the system. For the first time the world sees just how vulnerable their systems and by extension they truly are.