Has the CIH virus melted anybody down yet ?

greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

...Or is your computer too dead to read this thread and reply ?

-- Blue Himalayan (bh@k2.y), April 26, 1999


i posted the link to the symantec fix to my local pc users group mailing list on friday. my computer was inoculated. so far nothing heard from anyone.

-- jocelyne slough (jonslough@tln.net), April 26, 1999.

Lost hard drive on wifes puter this AM.

Fired it up, got 'blue screen of death', rebooted, it said "Hard drive? What hard drive? I don't see no steenking hard drive!".

Worked fine last night.

My F.R.E.D. is working fine, but I never allow kids near mine and never download any programs of any kind.

-- Art Welling (artw@lancnews.infi.net), April 26, 1999.

It may be a little to early to ask Blue. If anyone did get hit, them may not be on line for a day or two. <:)=

-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), April 26, 1999.

No...all is well here!

I did break down and yesterday purchased and installed Norton System Works for $65.00 - seemed reasonable and "prudent". No virus' found but I do feel better about surfing now...

-- Kristi (securx@Succeed.net), April 26, 1999.

I *think* I got nailed. I was installing some hardware/software, so it is hard to say for sure, but my system went south. After a lot of stuff got corrupted, I set the date back to 4/25/1999, and it got better, but the system was still hurtin'.

I re-burned the system BIOS, and am in the process of re-installing EVERYTHING.

I was installing my virus-protection software yesterday only to find out that it was too late. My system date was 1 day ahead!

-- Anonymous99 (Anonymous99@Anonymous99.xxx), April 26, 1999.

I'm curious...I haven't seen any info about how you might infect your computer. At least with Melissa, they told you that the mistake you made was opening " Important Message from..." Is there something similar with this virus??

-- K Stevens (K Stevens@TEOTWAWKI.com), April 26, 1999.

CERT has a FAQ page for CIH at... <:)=

http://www.cert.org/ tech_tips/CIH_FAQ.html

-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), April 26, 1999.

Major MD office in town got burned real bad. They have 23 MDs and ???? number of patients. Same guy that does my computer work had to cancel today to go 'rescue' them. Seems that the temporary help they had been using had not backed up the data since last Wednesday or so. Totally fried the hard drive on their equipment. "We got BIG problems, Bubba."

Only crash I've heard of so far.

-- Lobo (atthelair@yahoo.com), April 27, 1999.

spoke to a fellow tonight who lost everything on both his computers

-- marsh (armstrng@sisqtel.net), April 27, 1999.


Chernobyl Computer Virus Hits Only A Few - But Very Hard

(Last updated 2:56 AM ET April 27)

By Dick Satran

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - The Chernobyl virus hit computers around the world Monday, wiping out data on hard drives and even causing some PCs to fail when starting up, computer experts said.

Although the virus hit only a tiny fraction of the machines affected by the recent Melissa virus, the new bug's bite was much more deadly for an unfortunate few.

"I've talked to people who, literally, were crying on the telephone -- a woman whose poetry book was almost done and was completely lost, a man whose doctoral dissertation was lost. They were devastated," said Mikko Hermanni Hypponen, of computer security firm Data Fellows Ltd. in Helsinki.

The worst damage appeared to be taking place in Asia and parts of Europe, where antivirus protection is less prevalent, and with pirated software, which is often filled with bugs.

Data Fellows Ltd. reported damage in Hong Kong, Singapore, India, Finland, New Zealand, Britain, Sweden, Japan and Malta, with hundreds of machines already being hit even before the United States opened for business. The bulk of the computers affected were in Asia, Data Fellows said.

The Carnegie Mellon University's Computer Emergency Response Team said it knew of only a few dozen computers hit by the virus. "It really hasn't been that bad," said a CERT case worker.

But the Chernobyl virus's limited impact did little to console those who were infected. DataFellows' Hypponen said that the cost of repairs could run into the millions of dollars. "Unlike Melissa, this is causing real problems and serious loss of data for some people," he said.

CERT said that data "may be unrecoverable" if the virus hits, and software needs to be reinstalled from the ground up to make computers work again, a task beyond the expertise of most home computer users.

"I just turned on the doggone thing and the screen was almost totally black -- it said 'os load in progress' and then it said 'insert bootable media in appropriate drive,' said one person hit by the virus, Christina Asksomitas of Palm Beach Country, Florida. "We tried to reboot it but nothing works."

Computer makers did not immediately return calls to say how many users were asking for help and it was unclear whether warranties would cover the problems. CERT said a data recovery service might be able to retrieve lost data. It posted information on vendors and other frequently asked questions at http://www.cert.org.

Computer experts said users could avoid the virus by not booting up their computers Monday, or resetting the date, since the virus is activated when computer utility systems hit the 26th date each month.

The Chernobyl virus is a variation of the CIH virus, first reported in the middle of last year, and believed to have been written in Taiwan. The CIH virus is also known as the "space filler virus," because it uses a special technique that secretly fills file space on computers and thwarts many of the antivirus softwares in place before its arrival. It is spread over the Internet and in infected Microsoft "executable" files for Windows 95 and Windows 98.

While the virus has been hitting on the 26th day of each month since last year, this month's version was expected to be the most prevalent and dangerous. The April CIH virus is called the Chernobyl virus because it's timed to go off on the anniversary of the Soviet nuclear accident, one of technology's worst disasters.

Most up-to-date antivirus software will spot the bug, if it's there, and many corporate computers have recently upgraded their protection because of the Melissa scare.

The Melissa virus was one of the most fast-spreading ever reported. Sent via Internet e-mail last month, it initiated an automated "macro" program that sent scores of e-mails from target users' computers listing porn sites on the Web. The virus overwhelmed and even shut down some e-mail systems, and caused some embarrassment, but there were few reports of lost data or serious damage.


-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), April 27, 1999.

"a woman whose poetry book was almost done and was completely lost, a man whose doctoral dissertation was lost"

When will people learn to BACKUP important files? Look at the above. Isn't a $100 backup device and a few minutes worth it?

-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), April 27, 1999.

And one more thing. It's not only the ever increasing virus threats, hardware fails all the time. Every hard drive WILL crash. It's only a question of when. <:)=

-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), April 27, 1999.

An acquaintance of mine got nailed. His two FAT copies and partition table were all destroyed when he powered up and went into Windows yesterday morning. Everything went funky for him, bluescreens and crashes, and when he restarted he got the famous "missing operating system" error after the POST and BIOS-bootstrap finished.

FDISKing the drive showed no active partitions, no partition information was defined. The drive was for all intents and purposes reset to just-out-of-the-box.

Lost & Found (a product of Powerquest, the Partition Magic people) showed that the FATs and partition table were zeroed out. The data was still on-disk, but references to top-level drive structure and filesystem were wiped out. A rebuild would be risky but he had critical data backed up on floppies ([choke!] I'd use a Zip drive, Jaz drive, or CD-R burner. Oh, wait, I have all three and use them for backups of different grade already. Nevermind. ;-) )

It's a nasty one if it gets you, folks! There's a variant that triggers on day 26 of any month, not just on Chernobyl's anniversary in April.

Bottom line: You've heard the sermon before, but I'll preach it agin... BACKUPS. BACK UP YOUR CRITICAL DRIVE. IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A DECENT BACKUP DRIVE OR METHOD, GO GET ONE. (Internal Zip drive for less than a C-note, for example.) The acquaintance had decent backups; he'll be back up well before week's end.

That sermon gets closely followed by the second: Get at least TWO different, decent anti-virus utilities and keep them updated REGULARLY to the tune of once every two weeks. I run Norton Anti- Virus and AVP and have not gotten hit by anything for, well, ever come to think of it.

The ever insane but well protected...

-- OddOne (mocklamer@geocities.com), April 27, 1999.

It hit hard overseas. See the article at this link:


-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), April 27, 1999.

I dunno, does anybody else think that all us people are slowly becoming accustomed to "virus'?" (I know, I'm paranoid...grin!)

The subject of computer virus' -- awful, horrible, nasty ones -- has been coming up quite frequently lately. I'm thinking we're all supposed to get slowly accustomed to computers crashing...and to think it is...gasp...cyberterrorism...

-- M. Moth (derigueur2@aol.com), April 27, 1999.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ