A computer virus spreading model based on resource limitations and interaction costs

Chung Yuan Huang, Chun Liang Lee, Tzai Hung Wen*, Chuen-Tsai Sun

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Computer viruses are major threats to Internet security and privacy, therefore many researchers are addressing questions linked to virus propagation properties, spreading models, epidemic dynamics, tipping points, and control strategies. We believe that two important factors-resource limitations and costs-are being overlooked in this area due to an overemphasis on power-law connectivity distributions of scale-free networks affecting computer virus epidemic dynamics and tipping points. The study show (a) a significant epidemic tipping point does exists when resource limitations and costs are considered, with the tipping point exhibiting a lower bound; (b) when interaction costs increase or usable resources decrease, epidemic tipping points in scale-free networks grow linearly while density curves decrease linearly; (c) regardless of whether Internet user resources obey delta, uniform, or normal distributions, they retain the same epidemic dynamics and tipping points as long as the average value of those resources remains unchanged across different scale-free networks; (d) it is possible to control the spread of a computer virus in a scale-free network if resources are restricted and if costs associated with infection events are significantly increased through the use of a throttling strategy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)801-808
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Systems and Software
Volume86
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2013

Keywords

  • Agent-based simulation model
  • Epidemic dynamics
  • Power-law connectivity distributions
  • Scale-free networks
  • Small-world networks

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