A Special Report

'Double Whammy'
Virus Attack


         How many times has your computer been infected?       
  'Double Whammy' Virus Attack
                              a RPStaff Reprt

When one of our readers wrote to us about being infected twice within two months by a virus, it really struck a major chord. We had just experienced the same type of a one-two punch and went through an agonizing recovery period.

She had installed a free firewall that came with her computer. The worm got thru, so after cleaning it out, she installed one of the popular name brand firewalls and virus protection programs... but was again hit by the Blaster worm.

It sounds as if she had the same experience that we had recently. The 'Blaster' virus hit us twice within two months. I had a firewall and an online virus scanning program and was careful about opening only email from senders that I recognized.

The virus disabled our 'C' drive so we couldn't boot up. The 'C' Drive had to be 'wiped' both times and the operating system was re-installed, as well. Painful, to say the least. We're still recovering.

So, here's what I do now, and maybe this will help you.
1. When I open my mail server and look at the list of new messages, I start at the top and immediately Delete any that got past my filters and still look suspicious.
2. If there is an attached file to an email that I'd like to keep, I download it to a floppy and virus scan the floppy before I open the attachment. THEN I decide if that file can be opened.
3. I manually initiate a complete scan of my system at least once a week.
4. When my McAfee.com online Virus Scanning program alerts me to new updates, I stop what I'm doing and immediately do a system virus scan of my whole computer.
5. I do the same when my Firewall provider pops open a new update message.
6. There are two partitions on the computer I use for internet activities - a 'C' drive and a 'D' drive. I save all of my Data files and everything else that is important to folders on the 'D' drive. I also save some of my application files to 'D'.
After reinstalling the Operating System the first time, I found that everything on the 'D' drive was still intact. The first system virus scan then took a look at those data and files to disinfect and repair any with possible bugs.
7. I try to backup vital data to an Iomega Zip disk or external hard drive. I also back up some application files to a CD. This is not the perfect answer for recovering full programs because the data in the Registry is lost when the 'C' drive is wiped  clean...
 and there's always the situation where DLL's are lost.
8. I have just started to consolidate all of my password and internet addresses of my 'Favorites' into a log book instead of on printouts and files in too many folders and file drawers.
An indexed telephone directory or address book makes a great place to keep this information. It's really helpful when trying to restore sanity after wiping the 'C' drive.

9. Someday I'd like to get my hands on those mentally and morally
challenged individuals that devise and release these viruses, worms
and Trojans. I know that this will never happen,
so I follow points 1 to 8 above.

There doesn't seem to be an absolutely 100 percent, never fail, perfect tool to defeat the hackers malicious attacks. There are hundreds of tools and programs available to fight this enemy. Google will help you find them; many can be downloaded from the c|Net website.
                                                               ...Richard Rossbauer
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Our Reports and Getting Started Tools are updated regularly by RichardPresents.com

Related topics -
  Virus Infection
     Virus Protection



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