virus hoaxes


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virus hoaxes

Phony virus warnings delivered via e-mail just to upset as many people as possible. Considering the speed with which messages can be copied and sent electronically, once a virus hoax gets started, it can traverse the world in minutes. Hoaxes such as the Good Times virus tell people that if they open their e-mail, their hard drives will be erased or some such catastrophe will occur.

Just Go Ahead and Delete a File
Another popular hoax is to send an e-mail message to Windows users telling them that a particular file has been downloaded into their computers along with instructions for deleting it. However, the files are actually valid Windows components, such as SULFNBK.EXE and JDBGMGR.EXE, which may be required and have to be re-installed.

Is it a Hoax or Not?
Antivirus vendors such as McAfee, Symantec and Trend Micro maintain lists of virus hoaxes as do some websites such as Snopes.com. The Computer Incident Advisory Capability (CIAC) within the U.S. Department of Energy maintained a list of virus hoaxes for 13 years before discontinuing it.
References in periodicals archive ?
Virus hoaxes continued to cause panic with threats of the SULFNBK `virus' striking on 1st June 2001.
The Web site, which is an extension of the Symantec AntiVirus Research Center, received a perfect rating based solely on user input and was listed as a key site for small businesses to track the latest virus threats and virus hoaxes.
The software, powered by the industry-leading MIMEsweeper engine, enables Service Providers to protect customers from e-mail threats by checking all incoming and outgoing e-mails and attachments for malicious content, offensive material, large files, specific file types, encrypted messages, spam, viruses and virus hoaxes.