I can understand that legacy gadgets, like the first-generation Apple iPod for example, may have some collectible value, but a laptop like the a 10.2-inch netbook from about a little over a decade ago? Probably not, but in the case of this particular unit, it has been snapped up in an auction for an astounding $1.2 million for reasons nothing other than it is a sinister machine.

You see, this netbook, a Samsung NC10-14GB dubbed The Persistence of Chaos, is no ordinary tiny laptop; it packs six computer viruses that were responsible for an estimated $95 billion in economic damages. Now, you may think that this is one of the evil products put up on sale at a super villain convention. Well, fortunately, it isn’t (and also super villain con doesn’t exist). It is actually an art commissioned by cybersecurity firm Deep Instinct and created by artist Guo O Dong.

Persistence of Chaos Malware Laptop Auction

Despite the laptop’s potential in leaving the world in shamble, it is totally safe for now – if you resist the temptation to connect it to the WiFi or plugging a USB drive. In other words, it should remain isolated and air-gapped like it is now so that it won’t cause any destruction. For now it is as harmless as a dove, but you could also say it is like primed bomb.

The real question is, why would anyone conjured up something this dangerous? Well, according to a report by The Verge, its creator explains that the idea was to turn abstract threats posed by the digital world into physical form.

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The six viruses in the laptop were handpicked by the virtue (or not) for the magnitude of economic damage they’ve caused. They include WannaCry, a ransomware that cripples computers in hospitals and factories in 150 countries in 2017, and the infamous ILOVEYOU, a computer worm infected countless PC worldwide in year 2000.

Also loaded inside the laptop are MyDoom, SoBig, BlackEnergy, and DarkTequiila malware. Each and every virus/malware is a reminder that viruses and malware are real-world threat that could bring the world down on its knees. Well, talk about dangerous art… this piece of supposed tech art should be locked inside a vault, buried deep inside the Earth.

At this point, I can’t help but to wonder why would any shell out $1.2 million for such volatile, malware-loaded and also very outdated laptop? Why???

Images: Deep Instinct/The Persistence of Chaos.

Source: The Verge.

Published by Mike chua

Avid tech enthusiast, gadget lover, marketing critic and most importantly, love to reason and talk.