[ Team LiB ]
Viruses and Email Attachments
Some people like to send out joke programs to their friends and opening these is risky.
You have no way of knowing whether the file is safe. Opening every file Aunt Carol
sends often results in your computer being infected with a virus, trojan horse application,
Many times your friends are not aware they're infected until you
alert them. The newest viruses get email address from any source—
they listen to data that your modem sends and receives to get email
addresses from your incoming and outgoing email, Web pages, and
files in your Internet cache folder.
Many viruses also include their own outgoing mail server so that you
won't notice Outlook sending messages.
Overall, Outlook 2003 is much more secure than previous versions of Outlook. The
Outlook Object Model (OOM) puts up a warning when a program attempts to read email
addresses or message bodies. When you try to mail merge to email, you might have to
approve every message. The Preview pane is inactive and scripts won't run in email.
There's no way Outlook will cause your system to become infected without a lot of help
from you. But that doesn't mean you're home free. You still need to be careful, especially
with email attachments.
You know what viruses are, but what are trojan horses and spyware?
Trojan horses are small programs that permit hackers to take control
of your computer. At the very least, hackers can use your computer
to attack other computers. At the other end of the scale, they might
have full access to all the files on your drive, including any personal
financial data you might have.
Spyware is also known as adware, and although it usually isn't
destructive, it downloads files to your drive and is often responsible
The first and possibly most important thing you can do is not open every attachment you
receive, even if it's from your beloved Aunt Carol. Remember, cleaning up after a virus
won't be nearly as funny as the joke she sent you. If the attachment isn't necessary for
your work or personal business, don't open it. When you stop opening every attachment
that friends send you, you reduce your chances of infection to almost nothing.
Remember to check for security updates regularly at Windows Update
and Office Update (office.microsoft.com).
[ Team LiB ]