Some web sites to shut down before Y2K : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

[Cary is a bedroom suburb of Raleigh, NC]

Thursday December 30, 1999 12:54 PM

Some Web Sites Will Be Shut Down Before Y2K

CARY (WRAL) -- Many local and state Web sites will not be working this weekend. They are being turned off in preparation for Y2K.

It is a precaution to keep them safe from computer hackers and Year 2000 viruses that might be launched on New Year's Eve.

We have been hearing about the possibility of terrorist attacks at New Year's Eve venues around the country, but that is not the only concern FBI agents working a command center in Charlotte will be focusing on this New Year's weekend.

It will be staffed in part by the Bureau's computer terrorism squad. According to the Feds, the threat of cyber-terrorism is real, and one Triangle town is taking it seriously.

The FBI's Internet site lists extremist groups that could use the Web to spread their hate or unleash computer-crippling viruses. That is a risk Fort Bragg does not want to take.

They are shutting down their Web site from 9 p.m. New Year's Eve until 6 a.m. Saturday.

The town of Cary is not taking any chances either. You will be able to surf its Web site, but the e-mail system to non public safety employees will be off-line as of 5 p.m. Thursday.

Any feedback between then and Monday morning will have to be done by fax, phone or snail mail.

"We don't feel a real loss by taking the Internet access off-line, and a lot of viruses are passed via the Internet, particularly e-mail," said Bill Stice, Cary management information director.

That is how the Melissa virus was spread nine months ago.

Unlike Cary, Raleigh does not plan to scale back its Web site access, though its Y2K readiness team issued a warning to employees.

"If you see something that you don't recognize or if it's mail from someone you don't recognize or that type of thing, just use caution with it," said Audry Robinson, Raleigh information supervisor.

In particular, employees are being advised to be wary of ".exe" files or executable files. This is also good advice for home computer users.

The ".exe" files can have attachment animations like the type you would receive with a greeting card. The Web experts say viruses are usually transmitted that way, shrouded in what looks like an innocent piece of e-mail.

The experts are advising that if you are not absolutely sure about the origin of a piece of e-mail you receive over the holidays, do not open it at least for a month.

The federal government is also taking precautions. Internet sites belonging to the Pentagon, federal personnel agencies and many military installations are among those being shut down this weekend.

-- Old Git (, December 30, 1999

Moderation questions? read the FAQ