Re: Word Macro Virus

Subject: Re: Word Macro Virus
From: "Robert E. Kane" <71764 -dot- 3210 -at- COMPUSERVE -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 1 Feb 1996 10:38:50 EST

Marvin W. Miller asked ... "if the infamous Microsoft Word Macro Virus can
infect Word templates and docs on the Mac? "

According to information on virus-l, Word macro viruses infect document files
for Microsoft Word version 6 or later on any platform. The following is
excerpted from an explanation provided by William J. Orvis.

Microsoft Word version 6 and later have a macro capability known as WordBasic,
which has the capability of creating auto execute (AutoExe), auto open
(AutoOpen), and auto close (AutoClose) macros, which are the mechanisms the
viruses use to take control of a computer and install themselves. An auto
execute macro is one that automatically runs every time you start Word. The auto
open and auto close macros run whenever you open or close the document they are
attached to. When you open an infected document, its auto open macro runs and
installs an auto execute macro in your global macro file ( Once that
is done, the virus code is executed every time you startup Word. The virus code
then writes copies of itself onto every document you save with Word.

WordBasic is an interpreted language, that is, the programs are written in text
form, which are read and executed whenever the program is run. This facility
makes the code and the virus independent of the platform they are running on.
The virus does not have to be written in machine language, but runs on any
machine with a WordBasic interpreter. Thus, the viruses run equally well on a
Macintosh, or any machine running Windows or Windows NT.

Bob Kane
rkane -at- servtech -dot- com

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