Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Urgent Virus Warning

Click here for my Tuesday Teaser.

I and two work colleagues have been hit by a severe-graded computer virus in the last 24 hours (I am not in email communication with either of them, but all my emails will be going via my uninfected desktop computer until the problem has been resolved).

This virus comes via an email attachment, and then attaches and replicates itself throughout your Word documents.

It will do any or all of the following:
  • Cause your anti-virus software to repeatedly block the same threat.
  • Cause Word documents to open without your consent, especially those with passwords.
  • Attach itself as a rogue file on your memory sticks.
  • Repeatedly close your Internet browser.
  • Block any attempts to access ANYTHING to do with viruses online. It will block access to your anti-virus provider's site and Google searches.

I have tried deleting all my Word documents, but it will not allow them to be deleted. I have been able to delete the rogue file - called Recyclers - on my memory sticks and scanned them with anti-virus software.

However, I have run a full scan on my laptop and no viruses were detected. Clearly, there is one there.

If you are confident you do not have the virus, I suggest doing the following:

  • Create a Restore Point for today's date.
  • Keep one memory stick with your files saved until that date and don't use it until your anti-virus provider has found a solution and updated your software.
  • Email a copy of all your Word files to an online email service, such as Hotmail or gmail. Should the worse happen, you can access your writing via another computer.

As my laptop is nearly three years old and I had to pay for a new hard drive last year, I have decided it is not worth the expense of repairing it. But I'm sure there are plenty of you with fairly new laptops/computers who don't want to be paying for a repair or lose their priceless writing.

Do not open any attachments unless you are 100% confident they are safe.

18 comments:

  1. Last week my lap top crashed, a pop up said that my securiuty system was infected, then the entire screen went a vivid blue, my windoows appeared but also bright red warnings came up saying to clear the infected areas I would have to pay $59-99 . I telephoned a pc repairer who said don't pay a penny as they are after your credit card details and from that can get your ID. He came out sorted out where all the above was coming from saying there were no virus's and that in the past week have been called out 30 times for the same problem.

    Yvonne.

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  2. Wow, that sounds bad. I'm so sorry for you.
    I hope you didn't lose any important things.

    I just yesterday thought about saving my files again. Will do soon.
    Nahno

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  3. I really feel for you Ellie. It is so unbelievable that there are people out there who create these viruses to bugger up everyone else's lives. BIG HUGS See you soon for coffee :O)

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  4. Recyclers? Thanks for the warning.

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  5. Ugh that's horrible. I've gone through this before as well and it's beyond frustrating. Hope everything works out!

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  6. Goodness - thanks for warning us. If only the people who create these viruses would turn their abilities to something more constructive.

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  7. Ugh, viruses suck! I am glad that my security system is hardcore. I never open emails from people I don't know, no matter how much money they say I've won. :P

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  8. Thanks for the warning. Will follow your advice and make a back up copy of all my files.

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  9. Viruses really can upset one's life. This one sounds very bad. So scary.

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  10. Oh noes!!! :-( I try to be kind and understanding to all creatures but people (bored lazy selfish so and so's) who deliberately create viruses are SCUM. Ahem.

    Thanks for the reminder and tips! Take care
    x

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  11. How horrible!

    How do you create a Restore Point?

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  12. Yikes, that sounds terrible! I hope you managed not to lose anything valuable. Thank you so much for the warning!

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  13. Hi Ellie - So sorry you've been hit! Windows Police Pro got me last year and it cost me $200 to have my hard drive fixed and my files restored. Every since, I now back up on my laptop, and on an external drive, and a flash drive. It is a pain, but I'll never be worried about losing files again.

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  14. I have a Mac and have never had a virus, doesn't mean I won't though, so your last piece of advice is very important.

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  15. That's why I don't open emails with attachments. However, I have helped clean the computers of people who do.

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  16. Yikes! That's awful! I tend to back up pretty often (at least since my laptop died last spring) - but I went and did it again just now. Thanks!

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  17. Hi Maria,

    to create a restore point go into your computers control panel and chose security and maintenance. The menu should come up with how to back up files and create a restore point.

    Ellie and I also know of one other person who has been hit by the virus. Its a nightmare so use Ellies tips to protect yourself if the worst happens.

    Rach

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  18. Good advice Ellie. And always, always keep everything backed up in case this or some other calamity strikes!

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