August 07, 2002
Just Kidding!

How can you tell if a virus warning you received is the real thing or just a hoax?

The three general characteristics of a virus hoax are that it:

--warns of catastrophic damages to your system
--invokes the authority of a large company that doesn't usually send virus warnings (ex: IBM, AOL, Microsoft)
--urges you to send the warning far and wide

The following are good sites to check for more information:

http://www.f-secure.com/virus-info/hoax
http://vil.nai.com/VIL/hoaxes.asp
http://securityresponse.symantec.com/avcenter/hoax.html

If you receive a virus warning and you're not sure whether it's a hoax or the real thing, you can also email us at eit@iastate.edu for help.

Posted by dcoates at August 07, 2002 09:29 AM