Today we live in an age where computer viruses can be used to prevent countries from developing nuclear weapons. But back in the 1980’s, viruses were a lot more focused on other subjects, like marijuana.
One of the original computer viruses from the 1980’s was known as the “Stoned” virus. It was spread through infected floppy discs that would spread when people loaned out them out to others. The virus was known as the “Stoned” virus because a person’s computer that was infected with it would say, “Your PC is now Stoned! Legalize marijuana.”
The virus is believed to have originated from a student in New Zealand, and initially spread throughout that country as well as Australia. But the virus would eventually spread around the world, including the United States.
The virus made somewhat of a comeback when makers of the Bitcoin blockchain included the signature, “Your PC is now Stoned,” inside it. Only the signature of the virus, not the actual virus itself, appeared in the blockchain. But Microsoft security initially detected the signature and assumed that any computers with the blockchain on it were infected. They later had to change their security protocols so people could access the blockchain without it being detected as a virus.
Unfortunately, it seems the virus didn’t end up legalizing marijuana, but it will still be remembered as a footnote in Internet history.