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Truth about computer security hysteria
Truth About Computer Security Hysteria

Direct-threat chain letters

CATEGORY: Hoax virus alerts

First seen in early 1998, these emails claim evil hackers automagically targeted you — yes, you! — for all sorts of maladies. They'll gang up to infect your computer with a virus, steal your password, charge phone sex to your credit card, release your social security number, permanently kick you off the Internet, blah blah blah.

But wait! You can get on the hackers' good side if you forward the chain letter to ten friends within the next 45 minutes. (Note the urgency.) Your ten friends will thank you for telling evil hackers to infect their computers with a virus, steal their passwords, charge phone sex to their credit cards, release their social security numbers, permanently kick them off the Internet, blah blah blah.

But wait! Your ten friends can get on the hackers' good side if they forward the chain letter to ten of their friends...

Ironically, many people forward the chain letter to their ten best friends or ten most important colleagues. It remains a mystery why they don't focus the (alleged) attack on ten casual acquaintances.

Last updated: 2000/7/2