Computer Viruses and “False Authority Syndrome

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COMPUTER VIRUSES AND “FALSE AUTHORITY SYNDROME”
4TH EDITION © 1995,97 ROB ROSENBERGER; ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. INTERNET E-MAIL: us@kumite.com WORLD WIDE WEB: http://www.kumite.com/myths ABSTRACT ......................................................................................................................................................................1 Copyright notice & distribution policies ..................................................................................................................1 Author Biography .....................................................................................................................................................2 FALSE AUTHORITY SYNDROME.......................................................................................................................................3 Virus pseudo-experts.................................................................................................................................................4 Computer security experts ........................................................................................................................................5 Computer repairmen.................................................................................................................................................6 Magazines, newspapers, TV......................................................................................................................................7 The “Green Paint Factor”...................................................................................................................................8 John Q. Public ..........................................................................................................................................................9 Implications of False Authority Syndrome................................................................................................................9 Conclusion ..............................................................................................................................................................10 SIDEBAR STORIES .........................................................................................................................................................12 False “virus alerts” on major online services........................................................................................................12 Employee fired when his computer DIDN’T have a virus ......................................................................................13 Antivirus firm calls an old program a “new” Trojan horse ...................................................................................13 The worldwide Michelangelo virus scare of 1992 ..................................................................................................14 False Authority Syndrome vs. the Communications Decency Act...........................................................................16 BIBLIOGRAPHY .............................................................................................................................................................17 Terms, acronyms, abbreviations .............................................................................................................................19

ABSTRACT
Many people in the computer field sound confident when they talk about computer viruses — yet very few have adequate knowledge of this technically obscure subject. Most fall prey to what some virus experts call “False Authority Syndrome,” and it contributes significantly to the spread of fear & myths about computer viruses. I will persuade readers to question the credentials of anybody (myself included!) who claims to speak with authority on this subject. This treatise deals with virus issues related to the IBM PC family of computers, but its main thrust about False Authority Syndrome spans...
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