Cyber sleuths over at Kaspersky Labs have revealed the notorious Stuxnet virus, which was designed to infect industrial control systems in nuclear plants, has four ‘cousins' made in the same lab.
The company said three of Stuxnet's cousins have been not unleashed yet and it is not clear what dubious purpose they serve. Another of Stuxnet's cousin, Duqu, was recently discovered by security companies.
According to an article on the Daily Mail, the company said the viruses were created in the same lab. Researchers have discovered evidence within the Stuxnet code that proves there are three unused Stuxnet-like viruses.
They have been designed to ‘search' for each other while on an infected system as they are ‘family members'.
Kaspersky's director of global research & analysis, Costin Raiu toldReuters that the Stuxnet virus was designed in such a way that anyone can create new cyber weapon just by adding or removing components.
"It's like a Lego set. You can assemble the components into anything: a robot or a house or a tank," he said. It remains to be seen how certain people will use (or misuse) these components in the future and what the repercussions will be.