I LOVE YOU worm - Makin' the rounds


Fully vaccinated are you?

Windows-Haters Crow Over Worm
by Leander Kahney

11:40 a.m. May. 9, 2000 PDT
While most of the world convalesces from the Love Bug worm, people running alternatives to Windows are smugly congratulating themselves for knowing better than to use Microsoft software.

The Love Bug and its variants over the last few days have melted down millions of computers worldwide and caused billions of dollars in damages. But clever users running Macs, the BeOS, and various flavors of Unix happily gloat that they were immune to the attacks.

Many of these users gleefully pointed out on message boards and mailing lists that the worm didn't do damage to all computer users; it only harmed Windows users who employ Microsoft's Outlook and Outlook Express email software.

"The point is that the root cause of these mass virus proliferations is a pathetically insecure email client foisted upon the public by a certain evil monopoly whose name I need not mention," wrote Seldolivaw Ssov in an email. "Hey, this *only* happens when you use Outlook and Outlook Express!"

"I think the reason it spread is because so many people use Outlook Express," said Jessie Liu, an analyst with market research firm Dataquest. "And the second reason is, people need to get more education about how to protect themselves from the network."

According to Dataquest, approximately 95 percent of the world's PCs are Intel-compatible, and the vast majority run Windows in one flavor or another.

As for Outlook and Outlook Express, Dataquest estimates 60 percent of business users are running those products, a number that is likely to increase as more and more IT managers dump Lotus Notes in favor of Microsoft products, Liu said.

But those users who are running alternatives were smug.

"I very much enjoyed computing all day yesterday, secure in the knowledge that the 'Love Bug' couldn't affect my machine," wrote Michael Dlugos, who uses a Mac, in a post to ZDNet's chat boards. "I got a ton of work done, and had many hearty chuckles at the poor sots who have to struggle along using Microsoft products. Get a Mac. It's the best kind of 'love' you can get from a computer."

Lynne Ragazzini, an engineer with Sun who runs Solaris, a variation of Unix, said she received the worm three times last week but it had no effect on her work machine or on her iMac at home.

Ragazzini said that instead of hunting down the author of the worm, law enforcement should be prosecuting "Microsloth" for configuring Outlook Express to run background scripts.

"It's a serious flaw that allows this kind of thing to happen again and again," she said. "The idea of allowing people to perform active processes using mail is a bad idea. You think they would have gotten it by now after Melissa. I avoid the whole Microsoft nightmare altogether."

John Poultney, former editor of MacHome, said the Love Bug and the Melissa virus vividly illustrate how easily homogenous computer networks can be bought to their knees.

"Information technology managers are willing to put up with virus attacks every three months, but refuse to support Macs on Windows networks," he said. "It doesn't make much sense to me. It's cheaper in the long run to have diversified networks."

Gene Steinberg, author of Upgrading & Troubleshooting Your Mac and the MacNightOwl site, pointed out that in an ironic twist, Macs were protected from the bug's bite because of a problem that has bedeviled them for years: slow and spotty software development for the platform.

Even though many Mac users run Microsoft software on their machines, Macs lack support for Visual Basic at the system level, a component that the Love Bug needs to do any damage, Steinberg said.

"This is the kind of neglect we want," he said.

Copyright © 2000 Wired Digital Inc., a Lycos Network site. All rights reserved.
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I admit that @home I didn't worry about the virus. And at work I figured that if my NT machine went down, tough.
If I were our IS guy I'd think differently.
However, Lotus is our company's e-mail system, and several people got bugged through it.
I'm currently arguing the Mac/PC bit with a friend, and he's not moving even with Windows OS bugs abounding. But I'll make the arguement to him anyway. ;)

[This message has been edited by [email protected] (edited 09 May 2000).]


Fully vaccinated are you?
Microsoft is slowly becoming recognized for what it is - the kiss of death. Bill was, and still is, a salesman. Bill recently said (in so many words) that if everyone would adopt Microsoft, these virus problems would go away. Yeah - sure.... I'm rea-a-a-a-l stupid.... Some of you may remember when the MS OS was called MooseDOS. For good reason. Then came the windows debacle - which continues today. Years ago MS would point out the crash prone nature of the Mac OS. Then - MS tried a GUI with windows. I have never heard from the Redmond profiteers "...geeez - it IS more complex than a streight DOS system..." as windows crashed, and crashed and continues to crash today.


Why we don't have viruses for Mac? because no one will loose time to write a virus for some thousands users.(jk)

How to avoid e-mail viruses?
1st Do not open msgs from someone you don't know.
2nd Use an AV and a FW
3rd At work do your job and let the love msgs for home.
And to the one who said that only the users of MS Outlook can be infected - it is as that because the virus was designed specifically to do that.

So... using other type of computer than a PC or another OS than MS Windows does not make you clever than the rest of us, so stop laughing and protect your computers.

Frustrated...(no, I was not hit by the love letter)
1) These viruses that hit Outlook only need one person to open the attachment. They've been attacking people's address books to get future victims. That means that the attachment will probably come from someone you KNOW.
2) I'm looking forward to the virus that sends an attachment called "New Org Chart". Try not to open that one!
Sorry, I'm not more sympathetic to PC users, but I started on Macs, crashed on Windows 3.0 & 3.1 to the point where you won't get a good word for Windows from me!
And I have to use one at work. At least it's an NT system


Fully vaccinated are you?
Originally posted by isorin:

Why we don't have viruses for Mac? because no one will loose time to write a virus for some thousands users.(jk)
Not really. There are at least 2145 Mac owners in the world! ;)

A Mac fan since 1986, I have experienced 1 Mac virus - back in 1991 which was the wdef virus (non-destructive) which, to get rid of it you just rebuilt the desktop file. No big deal. Mac users have traditionally not been of the personality to write viruses. We are not by nature destructive idiots! Simple as that.

I do, now that I think of it, remember another virus back in 1997 that Macs were succeptable to - it was the same old thing - came in thru a Microsoft product.

I use a Mac daily, server is Apache on unix. We Mac folks are smug, no doubt, and we are content to leave the viruses to the PeeCee folks. All 5 billion of them!

Think Different! Think Mac! (We don't need no stinkin' Pee Cee!)

Don Reid

With all the discussions taking place about ISO/QS9000 & TS16949, etc, how does Bill Gates and his buddies assess customer satisfaction? Is Microsoft ISO9000 accredited?

Perhaps you American chappies can provide some clues?
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