By Trey Herr
Within PrEP, malware that have a payload designed to create destructive physical OR digital effects can be classified as a weapon.
Digital effects damage the integrity or availability of an information system - deleting data or disrupting a network service. These could be short term, as with a brief denial of service attack, or near permanent, where a payload is designed to wipe the boot layer of a hard disk. Physical effects manipulate a piece of equipment, like a centrifuge or generator, causing it to damage or destroy itself. The Aurora test at Idaho national labs, deployed a cyber weapon into the industrial control system of a multiton generator, causing it to jump and shake on its foundations, eventually destroying the machine. Destruction can amount to physical damage or loss of data integrity such as deletion or corruption. This still requires the combination of the three components, a propagation method, exploit, and payload, but is differentiated from malware by the effects produced by the payload.