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Re: In Response to Aedan

Poster: Corun MacAnndra <corun@access.digex.net>

Brian wrote:
> I believe that you are refering to my posting on the virus
> alerts.Apparently the offended have mail clients that dosn't require
> them to "open" thier mail.I myself was attacted a month or so ago,
> turned on my computer the next day to the message "would you like to
> format another drive" fortunately all the important info was backed up.

I'd be very interested to know what email program you are using and on what
platform. I'd also be interested in knowing what virus attacked your hard
drive and how precisely it was transmitted. Please be specific.

I am not asking this in order to continue any flame wars, but only to get
prcise information. You see, in all my years in working with computers, I
have never encountered a mere text message that was capable of doing any
damage to a computer. All email must be "opened" as you say, in order to
be read, and such are only text files. In order to transmit a virus or run
any commands such as Format, the file must be executable. That is, it must
be a .EXE, .COM, or .BAT (at the bare minimum) file, and you must actively
run this file. The act of simply downloading it to your computer will not
run it and therefore not transmit any virus or activate and trojan horse.
An email message, by and of itself, is not an executable file. It is text
only, and even if that text is made up of commands like those that could
be placed in a batch file, it must still be saved as a file of the correct
name (.BAT in the case of DOS based machines) and actively run. I have
heard of a fellow's hard drive being formatted because of an attachment,
but he actively ran the attached file.

In any case, I'm interested to know what virus attacked your computer, and
how exactly it was allowed to do so. I've worked with viruses, and more
importantly anti-virus programs, for a number of years. In my job I have
to know these things in order to protect my customers and their data. If
there is any real virus out that can be run simply as a result of reading
email, I'd like to know about, but I need details. At this time I have
to be a bit skeptical.

In service,

     Corun MacAnndra   |   Dark Horde by birth   |   Moritu by choice
 I do not understand objections to 'cruel and unusual' punishment. While a
judge should be benevolent in purpose, his awards should cause the criminal
to suffer, else there is no punishment. -- R. A. Heinlein, Starship Troopers
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