'Good Times' hoax proves enduring

Two years on, the 'Good Times' virus hoax is still doing the rounds.

Two years on, the "Good Times" virus hoax is still doing the rounds.

Those on the receiving end get an email message warning them that a computer virus called "Good Times" is being circulated via email. Recipients are told that any message with "Good Times" in the subject line will cause unimaginable havoc, erasing their hard drive and even melting down the machine's processor. Presumably the moon turning blood-red and slaughter of the first-born will be included in the release of Good Times 1.1.

The hoax message has been doing the rounds since November 1994, and it seems to have been in hot circulation in New Zealand recently--IDG has been approached about the "virus"every few days in recent weeks.

It's not possible for a virus to be spread simply by reading an email message. Only if the user is downloading and running an unfamiliar application could the machine be infected--and even then, only if the program were written for that machine, according to InfoWorld US.

However, if you've received one of the messages, and believed it, you're in good company. According to an FAQ on the virus, among the US companies which received, and believed, the message, are AT&T, NASA, CitiBank, NBC, Hughes Aircraft, the US Department of Defence--and Microsoft.

For more information about the hoax, go to http://www.datafellows.fi/v-descs/goodtime.htm

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