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“Olympic Torch” Floods With Hoax E-mails

The well-known "Olympic Torch Virus" arrives again but this time circulating in a different way. The Olympic Torch Virus Hoax is spearing in through the 'Orkut online community', report experts at "MicroWorld Technologies".

The hoax e-mail first appeared in February 2nd week this year. It said that no one should ever open an e-mail that contained an attachment called 'Invitation' no matter who the sender was. It also said that the virus in the attachment would burn the computer's hard disk. The hoax continued to explain how address book theft occurs and how the virus can mass mail to these addresses. The e-mail also used names of security firms like Microsoft, CNN and others. The e-mail concluded with a thought provoking message about why people should protect their computer hard drives from massive destruction.

Sulabh Mahant of MicroWorld Technologies said that the psychoanalysis of hoax mails hints about the puzzling nature inherent behind their delivery. Many senders of these e-mails are just curious to see how rapidly and to what distances these false mails travel. Some get sadistic pleasure watching them progress. These hoax mails sometimes travel in chains, which are fraudulent money making pranks. They take the form of "Ponzi Schemes" and "Multi-Level Marketing" by which they invite greater troubles. Other hoax e-mails are completely malicious ones that spread false and harmful information to their recipients.

E-mail providers lose a lot by such e-mails. The e-mails clog mailboxes, block e-mail servers, and fill the storage space with irrelevant content. In 2001 an e-mail hoax was generated that said that Windows file 'sulfnbk.exe' was a virus, which made many users to delete the critical Windows file. The harm thus caused could be easily compared with a virus doing a similar thing.

According to MicroWorld's CEO, Govind Rammurthy, routine technologies used to fight spam like "Real-time Black List", "Reverse DNS" or "Gray Listing" will become useless in contact with hoax mails as the sender of these e-mails are known people. The spam- fighting product should be sharp enough to know a technique that would catch and nip in the bud all such mails attempting to enter mailboxes.

Related article: “Loopholes did not cause online banking thefts”: ICBC

» SPAMfighter News - 22-09-2006

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