Project Cyber Virus: Digital Security Then and Now

Inside the secret world of hacking, cyberterrorism, encryption, and vintage computer viruses.

Event Details


swissnex San Francisco
730 Montgomery St., San Francisco, 94111 United States


May 06, 2015 9:00 am - May 30, 2015 5:00 pm America/Los Angeles (UTC-08:00)



In a century in which cyber security has become a major threat, swissnex San Francisco offers a look back at how hackers began infiltrating computers in the 1980s and 1990s, before the World Wide Web.

The early days of cyberterrorism consisted largely of simple pranks that took control of DOS-based computers, erased data, or displayed flashy images on the screen—the building blocks for today’s keyloggers, worms, spyware, and more. In this exhibit, examine some of the work of early day cybercriminals for what it was: smart, mean, juvenile, and sometimes artistic.

Visitors will interact with the computer viruses themselves and experience what it’s like to infect machines and trigger sleeping bugs just waiting for the right moment to strike.

Project Cyber Virus acts as a dynamic backdrop for a monthlong program investigating the current concerns of cyber security, encryption, data storage, and the future of hacking.

Exhibit Hours

Monday – Friday, 10:00 am – 6:00 pm
Closed on Memorial Day

Related Events

These events are part of a monthlong series and exhibition at swissnex San Francisco that ask tough questions about digital security in the past, present, and future.

Project Cyber Virus: Opening Reception
May 5, 2015
Learn the history of hacking and its counterculture during opening night of our monthlong exhibit, Project Cyber Virus.

Vulnerability in the Connected World
May 12, 2015
Are smart things and smart cities too risky? When our devices, objects, cars, and cities are all connected to the Internet, will we be smart enough to protect ourselves from a new kind of cyberterrorism?

May 18, 2015
Bring your connected device and learn to use cutting-edge encryption tools during the San Francisco CryptoParty.

Ensuring Safety for the Future of Cyberspace
May 19, 2015
Learn which technologies hold promise for protecting our data and privacy in cyberspace, why you should use them, and how they work.


Photo: Myleen Hollero