vandal

Definitions

General English

  • noun a person who takes pleasure in destroying property, especially public property.

Electronics

  • An executable file, such as that created using ActiveX, or an applet, which is intended to steal passwords, provoke a denial-of-service attack, or cause some other harm. Since it does not seek out other programs to replicate itself, it is not a virus. A vandal may arrive, for instance, in the form of an email attachment, or via content downloaded when accessing a Web page.

Law

  • noun somebody who destroys property, especially public property, wilfully

Origin & History of “vandal”

The term vandal commemorates a Germanic tribe, the Vandals, who sacked Rome in 455 ad, and thereby earned themselves a reputation as destroyers of civilization. their name for themselves was *Wandal-, which etymologically means ‘wanderer’.
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