The WildList was established in July 1993 by anti-virus researcher Joe Wells and has since been published monthly by the WildList Organization (now part of ICSA Labs (itself part of TrueSecure Corporation).

It aims to keep track of malware that is spreading in the real world (the WildList FAQ cites the WildList as ‘the world’s authority on which viruses users should really be concerned with’).

However, today’s connected world, and the massive increase in malware samples in recent years (Kaspersky Lab analyses hundreds of thousands of samples daily!) there’s a high risk of new malware spreading before it is formally listed.

As a result, the distinction between ‘in the wild’ and ‘zoo’ malware (the latter term is used for malware that is known to exist but hasn’t been seen in the wild) has blurred and the WildList has become somewhat outmoded as a measure of the real threat.