Macro viruses (was RE: NORMAL.DOT)

Subject: Macro viruses (was RE: NORMAL.DOT)
From: Roy Jacobsen <rjacobse -at- GREATPLAINS -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 15 Dec 1998 14:03:53 -0600

First point: There isn't any such thing as _the_ Word Macro Virus. There are
many, many Word macro viruses.

Problem is, as Word becomes more and more sophisticated, these viruses are
getting more and more complicated. (Not that it takes a genius to create a
virus; in reality, most viruses are pretty clumsy.) In Word 97, with it's
VBA capabilities, the maggot-infested cretins who create these things have
had a field day.

For example, we've just run into a virus type called the Class virus. This
thing creates a file at the root of your C drive called CLASS.SYS, and some
variants of this one also write things to your Windows Registry. So just
deleting your NORMAL.DOT isn't a complete solution.

The VERY BEST things I know to prevent infection are:

1. Get a good virus scanner (I don't care much which one, just get one)
and--this is key--KEEP IT UPDATED!!!!!

2. Set your templates (*.DOT) as Write Protected. If you're doing
customizations, do them, then write-protect your production templates.

3. TRUST NO-ONE. Most of the virus infected documents I encounter come from
people within our organization. Don't assume a document is clean just
because it comes from a colleague. If it wants to run macros when you open
it, DON'T LET IT!

4. KEEP YOUR VIRUS SCANNING SOFTWARE UPDATED! (Yes, I'm repeating myself. It
amazes me that people who ought to know better omit this very important
step.)

Regards,
Roy M. Jacobsen
Editor
Great Plains Software
rjacobse -at- greatplains -dot- com

You've no idea what a poor opinion I have of myself, and how little I
deserve it. -- W.S. Gilbert

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