Urgent Virus Threat – NOT!

by | May 24, 2001

For the third time in two days, I’ve received an e-mail from some well intentioned idiot warning me of an extremely destructive computer virus for which there is no cure. In each case, it took me about a minute to go to the Symantec web site and learn that the alleged viruses were hoaxes. In […]

For the third time in two days, I’ve received an e-mail from some well intentioned idiot warning me of an extremely destructive computer virus for which there is no cure. In each case, it took me about a minute to go to the Symantec web site and learn that the alleged viruses were hoaxes. In fact, Symantec had the exact text of the hoax warning e-mail on its web site.

Now people, if I can do it, so can you. These warnings waste my time, especially since I feel compelled to reply back to everyone on the distribution list, telling them that the warning was a hoax and providing them with a link to the appropriate Symantec web site page. Furthermore, these warnings can be harmful if the directions contained therein are followed blindly by other idiots, as some of these hoaxes instruct you to delete files from your computer that contain viruses — important files that do not in fact contain viruses.

Worried about viruses? You should be. Get Norton AntiVirus 2001 and update your virus definitions daily (Norton does this automatically for you over the Internet). Configure your virus checker to scan your e-mail and anything you download from the internet. Check the Norton web site daily for news of late breaking viruses. Don’t open any attachment with an extension of .vbs. Don’t open any suspicious attachment — even if it came from somebody you know. Many viruses infiltrate your e-mail client and automatically send messages to everyone in your address book. Set up your scheduling agent to do a weekly scan of your hard disk (pick a time when you know your computer will be turned on.).

That’s your best defense.

So please, people, exercise a little due diligence and intelligence before sending out a virus warning to hundreds of people. Your heart is in the right place, but your head is in a dark place.

Anyway, I have bigger problems: someone stole my daughter’s IP address again. Guess how I’ll be spending my day.

Protect your computer

Norton AntiVirus 2001.Norton updates itself automatically over the Internet (McAfee always gave me trouble). Norton Antivirus also scans e-mail attachments, zipped files, and any downloads for viruses. It is also part of the Norton Internet Security 2001 2.5, which includes Norton Personal Firewall 2001 2.5 which is required if you have a broadband (cable, DSL) connection.

The views expressed above represent those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the editors and publishers of Capitalism Magazine. Capitalism Magazine sometimes publishes articles we disagree with because we think the article provides information, or a contrasting point of view, that may be of value to our readers.

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