How's this for authenticity? "Cybergeddon," the new online series from "CSI" creator Anthony E. Zuiker, will show lines of actual hacker code for creating computer viruses.
The code will come courtesy of Norton by Symantec — the company behind Norton Antivirus — which is a "Cybergeddon" sponsor and is providing the hacker serial with security insights. But Norton says showing the code won't help its viewers learn to unleash devastating viruses.
"What we provided to them was, 'Here's an example of what hackers are doing,'" said Norton spokeswoman Rhonda Shantz. "But no, there's nothing in there that somebody could run with."
Why? First, because the code posted will be for old viruses that are already out of date. Also, because the show won't post the complete code for a given virus. And finally, because anyone with the skills to introduce a virus already knows where to find code online.
The creators of "Cybergeddon" expect a global audience in the tens of millions for the series, which will debut in the fall on Yahoo! in nine 10-minute installments. "Cybergeddon" stars Missy Peregrym as a federal agent who is framed by a master hacker (Oliver Martinez) as he plots global cybercrimes.
In a sign of how much the lines are blurring between television and the Internet, Zuiker (above) previewed the series Wednesday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour. YouTube also presented its shows to the TV critics Tuesday for the first time in the TCA's history.