Issue 14 - Hoax-Slayer Newsletter
Issue 14: March 9th, 2004
This week in Hoax-Slayer:
High Rates of Virus Activity
There have been exceptionally high rates of virus activity over
the last week or so. New variants of Netsky, Beagle and MyDoom
have been hitting inboxes hard.
This is a time to be especially vigilant. Some of the messages
carrying the viruses are quite clever in the way they try to trick
recipients into clicking on the attachments. The emails carrying
the worms use a large variety of messages, subject lines and
attachment names, combined in a number of different ways. Some
pretend to be notification emails from companies such as Yahoo,
and ask that you click on the attachment for more information.
To add a patina of legitimacy, some even inform recipients that
they will need a password to access the attachment. In an absurd
twist, this supposed "password" is actually included in the email.
An example of just one of these virus-bearing emails is included
These worms may spoof email addresses, which means you may think
you are receiving an email from someone you know and trust,
when in fact they never sent it at all. The spoofing tactic
causes a lot of confusion and unnecessary finger pointing among
those who don't understand how it works.
Simply put, spoofing as it relates to virus dissemination, works
- Someone who has your email address stored somewhere on
her or his computer, becomes infected by a worm that uses
- The worm collects all the email addresses on the
infected computer, including yours, and sends itself to them.
- The worm inserts one of the email addresses it finds in
the FROM: line of the virus emails it sends. In other words, it
may use YOUR address in the FROM line, which tricks recipients
into thinking that the virus came from YOUR computer.
Thus, even though you may practice safe computing and have a
virus free machine, you may be unfairly accused of spreading
Right now, it is even more important to make sure your
anti-virus software is up-to-date. Furthermore, treat any
email with an attachment as suspect until proven otherwise.
If you don't have anti-virus software installed, then I would
strongly suggest that you get some as soon as possible. You
can download a quite adequate free virus scanner
from Grisoft (AVG).
You can also conduct a comprehensive online virus scan at Panda Active Scan
To read in depth information about these new worms, visitSymantec Security Response
Dear user of e-mail server "Egroups.com",
Our antivirus software has detected a large ammount of
viruses outgoing from your email account, you may
use our free anti-virus tool to clean
up our computer software.
For more information see the attached file.
Have a good day,
The Egroups.com team
Prank email targets Shadowcrew.com
The hapless crew at Shadowcrew.com have been the target of a
variety of prank emails designed to damage their reputation and
generally cause confusion. The email below was submitted by a
Hoax-Slayer site visitor and claims that the recipient's credit
card has been charged for the purchase of Viagra tablets.
Shadowcrew.com is not in the business of selling Viagra, nor are
they responsible for peddling child pornography, as implied in
the second example below.
Another prank email
aimed at Shadowcrew claims to be an account suspension message from eBay.
The reasons for these malicious attacks on the website are unclear.
I have been unable to access the shadowcrew.com website, which may
have been taken down.
Viagra Prank Email:
Your credut card has been sucessfully charged for $69.95.
Administration of www.shadowcrew.com online store would like to
thank youfor your purchase of Viagra tablets. Couple of words about
our products and services. Viagra is a prescription drug used to
treat erection difficulties, such as erectile dysfunction, which
also refers to as an impotence. At this condition men do not
experience normal erection, necessary for the sexual act. VIAGRA
works only in reply to sexual excitation and does not influence
reproductive function in any way. Your tablets will be sent to the
address specified by you within 24 hours. You should store VIAGRA at
temperature below 30 degrees in original packing and out of reach of
children. Do not take preparation after expiry date which is located
on top of the package. We are the only official dealers that offer
you tablets in original packaging. We guarantee to refund your
money during 30 days.
If you never purchased this product please contact us at:
To cancel this purchase please contact us at: 1.408-817-2800
To change the shipping address on the order: 1.877.999.8779
If you suffer any side effects please contact: 1.866.963.9696
For bulk purchases please contact: 1.703.547.2000
Thank you for choosing www.shadowcrew.com
We are the first - the best.
Child Porn Email:
Thank you for joining shadowcrew.com. Your credit card has been
charged $48.74. Now it is time to play in the shadows! Log on now
to enjoy trading of nude boy! All picture and movie files accepted
and exchanged by members. Rest assured, your credit card will be
charged discreetly $48.74 weekly for your platinum membership.
Enjoy the only man on boy love members forum?..
[Supposed links to child pornography removed]
WTC Survivor Virus Hoax
In spite of its age, the WTC Survivor virus hoax is still one of
the most widely distributed email hoaxes on the Internet. It
originally began circulation not long after the tragedy of 9/11.
It disgusts me that the perpetrators of this hoax could use such
a profound human tragedy to add weight to their pointless nonsense.
There is not, nor has there ever been a virus like the one described
in the email.
There are several, equally nonsensical, versions of this hoax,
including one rendered in Spanish.
You can confirm the status
of this hoax email at the Symantec Website.
I received this from a reliable family friend this morning.
10/28/01 BIG TROUBLE !!!! DO NOT OPEN "WTC Survivor" It is a virus
that will erase your whole "C" drive. It will come to you in the
form of an E-Mail from a familiar person. I repeat a friend sent
it to me, but called and warned me before I opened it. He was not
so lucky and now he can't even start his computer! Forward this to
everyone in your address book. I would rather receive this 25 times
than not not all.
If you receive an email called "WTC Survivor" do not open it.
Delete it right away! This virus removes all dynamic link libraries
(.dll files) from your computer. This is a serious one.
A more current version of the hoax is included below:
During the next several weeks be VERY cautious about opening or
launching any e-mails that refer to the World Trade Centre or 9/11
in any way, regardless of who sent it. PLEASE FORWARD TO ALL YOUR
FRIENDS AND FAMILY. FOR THOSE WHO DON'T KNOW, "WTC" STANDS FOR THE
WORLD TRADE CENTRE. REALLY DANGEROUS BECAUSE PEOPLE WILL OPEN IT
RIGHT AWAY, THINKING ITS A STORY RELATING TO 9/11!
BIGGGG TROUBLE !!!! DO NOT OPEN "WTC Survivor" It is a virus that
will erase your whole "C" drive. It will come to you in the form of
an E-Mail from a familiar person. I repeat, a friend sent it to me,
but called and warned me before I opened it. He was not so lucky
and now he can't even start his computer!
Forward this to everyone in your address book. I would rather
receive this 25 times than not at all. So, if you receive an email
called "WTC Survivor", do not open it. Delete it right away! This
virus removes all dynamic link libraries (.dll files) from your
PLEASE FORWARD THIS MESSAGE
Virus Remover Information Page
Mike from MikesWhatsNews
has created a very handy page that
lists a variety of virus removal tools from different AV
companies. This is a good page to bookmark for handy reference.
You can check out Mike's excellent Virus removers page here:
NASA and the Zero Gravity Pen
This old joke/hoax has been spotted doing the rounds again.
Government departments might be pretty wasteful at times, but NASA
spend $12 billion on a pen.
Subject: NASA's Zero Gravity Pen
When NASA first started sending up astronauts, they quickly
discovered the ballpoint pens would not work in zero gravity. To
combat the problem, NASA scientists spent a decade and $12 Billion to
develop a pen that writes in zero gravity, upside down, underwater,
on almost any surface including glass and at temperatures ranging
from below freezing to 300C.
The Russians used a pencil.
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