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  • Lobster
    Dear Friends, Recently for quite complex reasons I opened a potential virus worm with the .scr attachment and the excellent and free AVG virus checker not up
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 1, 2002
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      Dear Friends,

      Recently for quite complex reasons
      I opened a potential virus worm
      with the .scr attachment and the excellent
      and free AVG virus checker not up to date . . .
      I enclose for everyone some excellent advice
      from Hafizullah . . .

      (it was a worm incidently - LOL
      and hopefully did not self-send itself out to
      to too many people - as these things do)
      It took me a day and a half to sort this
      incident out - so please consider this
      info may save you some time :-)

      Lobster


      >First, some definitions:
      >Virus: A computer virus is a program that makes itself a working part of
      >another program --- "infecting" it --- in order to do its mischief. A virus
      >needs a host program to "execute" (run) and to propagate itself. The usual
      >target is operating-system files or MS Office document templates.
      >Worm: A "worm" is self-subsisting, in that it doesn't need to attach
      >itself to another program. It usually needs to be triggered by some event,
      >such as a user (that's you) running an email attachment or loading an
      >infected document, for it to infect a system and begin propagating.
      >Trojan: From the term "Trojan Horse." Also called a "bot." A "back
      >door" to your system from a network, either a local-area network or the
      >Internet. These can be used to steal information or to make your computer a
      >"slave" in a remote attack on yet another network or system.
      >
      >Much such "mal-ware" is platform-dependent, i.e., will only run on Windows
      >or only on Macintosh. Some, such as the "macro viruses" that can infect
      >MSWord and MSExcel documents, run on either. Some combine the attributes of
      >virus and worm, or worm and trojan.
      >
      >Hoax: Just what it says it is. **97% or better of the breathless
      >warnings you receive in email from friends about some new virus going around
      >will be hoaxes.** These use YOU as the propagating agent. Before you
      >forward ANY of these silly things, please check the available resources.
      >Here are "deep links" (bypassing the home page) to some anti-virus vendor
      >"hoax" info pages:
      >http://vil.mcafee.com/hoax.asp
      >http://www.symantec.com/avcenter/hoax.html
      >http://www.stiller.com/hoaxes.htm
      >http://www.antivirus.com/vinfo/hoaxes/hoax.asp
      >
      >
      >What You Can Do:
      >
      >First and foremost, ***keep your antivirus program up-to-date.*** You
      >wouldn't let your plants go unwatered or the cat unfed; this is just as
      >critical. If you don't believe me, just consider that a virus can turn your
      >computer into a high-tech doorstop, and a worm or trojan can create a mess
      >for hundreds of people you've never met or even get your account suspended
      >by your ISP. If your antivirus program has an auto-update feature, turn it
      >on. If not, check the vendor's website weekly. Bookmark the specific web
      >page so you can get to it easily.
      >
      >Second: Be VERY suspicious of opening email attachments, even if you've
      >done #1, and even if you know who appears to have sent it to you.
      >Attachments with filename extensions like .jpg, .jpeg, .gif, and .bmp are
      >safe; these are just graphics and there's no way to infect a system with one
      >of these. The filename extensions to be suspicious of are:
      >.exe
      >.com
      >.bat
      >.pif
      >.wsh
      >.scr
      >.js
      >.doc or .dot
      >.xls or .xlt
      >
      >These are "executable" (program) files, except for the last four, which
      >are MSWord and MSExcel files which can contain self-replecating code.
      >Sometimes a virus or worm will have what appears to be a double extension:
      >"imtrouble.jpg.exe", for example. If you have Windows set to hide the
      >extensions of "known" file types (file types "associated" with an
      >application program such as a wordprocessor), you'll not see the filename
      >extension flagging the file as an executable; it will look like
      >"imtrouble.jpg". I recommend turning the view of full filenames /on/. In
      >Windows 9.x, open any folder and go to View, Folder Options (I think it's
      >just 'Options' in Win95) and the View menutab. Look for a checkbox marked
      >"Hide extensions for known file types," and turn it OFF. That way, if you
      >get an executable attachment in a piece of mail, the nonsafe extension will
      >be visible.
      >
      >Third: Maybe this should be #2 instead: If you use Outlook Express or
      >Outlook, turn off the Preview Pane. The "preview" technically *opens* the
      >email, and there are a few malicious programs floating around that use these
      >programs' inherent programmability to infect your system when an email
      >message is opened. In Outlook Express, go to View, Layout. In the bottom
      >half of that dialog box is a check-box, on by default, for the Preview.
      >Toggle it off. In Outlook, go to View, and the toggle is right on the
      >drop-down menu in the form of a button. If you use Netscape mail, Eudora,
      >Pegasus, or any of the non-Microsoft email clients, you're safe. (At least,
      >I think you are vis-a-vis Netscape. However, if you're using Netscape, a
      >virus is probably not your most pressing problem.) As far as I know,
      >Outlook Express on Mac is safe, at least so far. It's also easily the best
      >of the Mac mail programs, and it's free.
      >
      >If you don't have an anti-virus utility, you are positively begging the
      >universe to whack you upside the head. Even if you don't feel a
      >responsibility to your own computer system, you have a responsibility to
      >your friends and to the Internet community to keep your system virus-free.
      >Any of the anti-virus programs out there will do the job, and many have a
      >try-before-you-buy option. The differences between them consist mostly in
      >the interface and in additional features, such as whether they also scan for
      >trojans. Currently, I am using one called AVG, out of Czechoslovakia. It
      >is fast, doesn't take up much memory or storage space, and easy to use. I
      >have also found it to be better-behaved than Norton AV, especially in the
      >scanning of email. Best of all, *it's free.* http://www.grisoft.com
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