2002
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Network Science

Halting viruses in scale-free networks

Abstract
The vanishing epidemic threshold for viruses spreading on scale-free networks indicate that traditional methods, aiming to decrease a virus’ spreading rate cannot succeed in eradicating an epidemic. We demonstrate that policies that discriminate between the nodes, curing mostly the highly connected nodes, can restore a finite epidemic threshold and potentially eradicate a virus. We find that the more biased a policy is towards the hubs, the more chance it has to bring the epidemic threshold above the virus’ spreading rate. Furthermore, such biased policies are more cost effective, requiring less cures to eradicate the virus.

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