You Never Send Me Flowers
Date Added: Apr. 3, 2002
Last Updated: June 22, 2007
Here's another unimaginative "if you open this e-mail, it will destroy your computer" virus hoax.
Intel announced that a new and very destructive virus was discovered recently. If you receive an email called "An Internet Flower For You", do not open it. Delete it right away! This virus removes all dynamic link libraries(.dll files) from your computer. Your computer will not be able to boot up.
SEND THIS TO EVERYONE ON YOUR CONTACT LIST!!
I've recently seen this one circulating by itself or attached to the slightly more valid Pretty Park virus warning. It's also recently been incorporated into the Virtual Card for You warning to create the "WORST EVER VIRUS" hoax.
Line-by-line, here are the tell-tale signs that this one is bogus:
- "Intel announced that..."
Intel is not in the virus detection business, they make microprocessor chips. A warning about a destructive virus would most likely come from a maker of antivirus software - like Symantec, McAfee, DataFellows, Computer Associates or the NIC - or the maker of the software the virus exploits. But even when one of those organizations issues a warning, they don't do it in the form of a "forward this to your friends" e-mail notices.
- ...a new and very destructive virus...
What other kind is there? In reality, most viruses are just nuisances and you have a much bigger risk of the theft of your information than to have your information destroyed. Besides, most viruses are easily detected and repaired (or prevented outright).
- ...was discovered recently.
When was recently? This chain has been circulating since at least March, 2000, so even if there had been an announcement then, it would now be difficult to call this one "recent."
- If you receive an email called "An Internet Flower For You", do not open it.
This is the most naive statement in the warning. Sure, in th early days when virus writers started sending their wares out, they tried to use very inventive subject lines to convince folks to open an e-mail from someone they don't know. Today, viruses are far more sophisticated, borrowing name and subject lines from victims' computers. Relying on the subject line for protection is foolhardy at best.
- This virus removes all dynamic link libraries(.dll files) from your computer.
Throw in a little techno-babble to make it sound more believable to the uninitiated. There are no known examples of a virus working this way.
- Your computer will not be able to boot up.
The ultimate fear of all PC users.
If that isn't convincing enough, Symantec, a leading global anti-virus provider, officially labels this one as a hoax.
Even if the threat was real, relying on anonymously authored and randomly forwarded e-mail warnings is an utterly ineffective technique for preventing infection. The only way to protect yourself is to install anti-virus software on your computer and keep it updated. For more ways you can prevent unwanted intrusions on your data, read "Protecting Your PC" in the "Chain-Breaker's Library" Break this Chain!