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February 16, 1988


By CBR Staff Writer

Between February 6 and 8, reports Newsbytes, some 40 or so people downloaded a file from the Genie and CompuServe electronic messaging services described as a discussion of unannounced Apple products – but what they got was an unannounced intruder in their system file in the first known virus program attack on Mac: the program, created by the Canadian Macmag magazine, was designed to hide in a Macintosh system file until March 2, when it would emerge and display a message of peace and then erase itself – but the program caused a panic at CompuServe, which feared the program would start wreaking havoc and destroying files and data; in fact it turned out to be harmless, but the tale suggests that one should treat all electronic mail of uncertain origin with as much suspicion as one would an unexpected package that might conceal a letter bomb.

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