Chain Letters and Hoaxes
Have you ever received e-mails like the following:
WARNING No. 1
If you receive any "CELCOM" Screen Saver, Please do not install it! This screensaver is very cool. It shows a NOKIA handphone, with time messages. After it is activated, the PC cannot boot up at all. It goes very slow. It destroys your hard disk. The filename is CELLSAVER.EXE
WARNING No. 2
Beware! If someone named "SandMan" asks you to check out his page. DO NOT! It is at: www.geocities.com/vienna/6318 This page hacks into your C:\drive. DO NOT GO THERE...
WARNING No. 3
If you get an E-mail titled : "Win A Holiday" DO NOT open it. Delete it immediately. Microsoft just announced yesterday. It is a malicious virus that WILL ERASE YOUR HARD DRIVE. At this time there is no remedy.
WARNING No. 4
If you receive an e-mail titled "JOIN THE CREW" or "PENPALS" DO NOT open it! It will erase EVERYTHING on your hard drive! PENPALS appears to be a friendly letter asking you if you are interested in a penpal.....but by the time you read this letter it is TOO late. The Trojan horse virus will have already infected the boot sector of your hard drive, destroying all the data present. It is a self-replicating virus, and once the message is read it will AUTOMATICALLY forward itself to anyone who's e-mail address is present in your box! This virus will destroy your hard drive and holds the potential to DESTROY the hard drive of anyone whose mail is in your box and whose mail is in their box and so on and on! So delete any message titled PENPAL or JOIN THE CREW this virus can do major DAMAGE to worldwide networks!
E-mails like these are almost always hoaxes. ALWAYS verify any supposed virus report before you sound the alarm. It only takes a minute using any of the FREE links below. Otherwise, by sending out an unverified (and probably false) virus warning, you're unwittingly aiding and abetting the hoaxers, which is exactly what they want.
www.symantec.com/avcenter/ will tell you whether this or any virus threat is real or a hoax. (Almost all the major antivirus vendors offer similar free services; you don't have to own their software to look up whether a virus is real or not.)
ciac.llnl.gov/ciac/CIACHoaxes.html will bring you to the Department of Energy's "Computer Incident Advisory Capability," a site used be government workers to see if virus reports are real or not.
urbanlegends.about.com/culture/urbanlegends also lets you look up many hoaxes by name or type
www.snopes.com also will help you identify hoaxes.
www.hoaxkill.com/ is "The Hoaxkill service: Let's get rid of hoaxes now!" Just forward them the virus hoax e-mail and they will e-mail the sender and all CCs a letter telling them about hoaxes.
www.911virusalert.com contains a very good virus list and hoax list.
Internet Fraud Watch
Again, please NEVER forward a supposed virus warning (or any other kind of e-mail) just because you get an e-mail that says "Pass this on to everyone!" This kind of e-mail is almost always a chain-letter hoax. Verify first, then tell your friends only if it's true.
(Most of the information on this page came from Fred Langa newsletter and web site.)
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Updated: 01/17/13 Comments? Mark@ford-mobley.com