Story from NST Online:
Courting fame by zapping viruses
BATU PAHAT: Nur Mohammad Kamil Mohammad Alta is not your regular 25-year-old. While most of his peers are busy working or hanging out with friends at a local teh tarik stall, he is busy tinkering with ideas to develop computer software for general purposes.
Nur Mohammad Kamil is also pushing the country to the forefront of software development thanks to his simple invention, the “Portable Anti-Virus” software.
The freeware programme recorded an impressive two million downloads a month from all over the world last year.
He said the software he developed in 2004 was the first of its kind in the world.
It can be downloaded from his website www.data0.com.
“I was quite surprised to know that my software is currently being used by people around the Asian region, as well as those from the United States and Germany,” he said yesterday.
This soft-spoken youth is neither a computer programmer nor a staff of an up-scale information technology company.
He hails from Kuala Pilah, Negri Sembilan and is a student at the Batu Pahat Advanced Technology Centre (ADTEC), where he is currently completing his diploma in IT network.
“I have been into computer programming since I was 8 years old. My father bought me my first computer and I began to study the machine’s programming.”
Nur Mohammad Kamil said he wanted to create software that was easy to use by casual computer users.
“Since the software is easy to use, people won’t find it hard to protect their computers from viruses.”
What sets his programme apart from any well-known computer virus programmes commonly used by people globally?
For a start, true to the software’s name, Nur Mohammad Kamil said the anti-virus programme was portable due its size; three megabytes to be exact, compared with similar programmes which were 20MB on average.
“You don’t even need a compact disc to store the programme. You can use a thumb drive or any other suitable storage medium. Unlike most software, the Portable Anti-Virus can be easily copied for distribution. You can choose to install it in your computer system or not. It can run either way.”
The software, which is currently a beta version, can detect most variants of viruses, worms, spywares and Trojans among others.
“However, it has yet to detect viruses from the 1980s. But it is almost impossible for viruses from that period to infect present-day computers.”
The programme was made known to Internet users through a web-based community site, www.putera.com.
It has also been digitally certified by websites softpedia.com and download.com as 100 per cent clean; free of spyware, adware and viruses.
“The full version of the software is expected to be developed in a few months time,” said Nur Mohammad Kamil.
ADTEC assistant director (training management) Meor Mohd Nazir Mohd Alwi said the centre was currently trying to nominate Nur Mohammad Kamil for a National Youth Award, under the skills and invention category.
“He is the toast of ADTEC for coming up with such an invention. We will find a way to get his invention recognised.”