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Computer virus alert: Take action to protect your data

Reports of computer viruses, most notably the MTX virus, have increased on campus in recent weeks. The MTX virus is distributed via an e-mail attachment using several different names. It causes considerable damage to Windows system files and is difficult to remove.

Most computer virus outbreaks are preventable. Information Systems and Computing (ISC) reminds everyone at Penn to protect their system by following these simple recommendations:

  1. Back up your work. Keep backup copies of important papers, research projects, and other critical documents.

  2. Exercise caution with e-mail attachments. Do NOT open e-mail attachments, even from senders you recognize, unless you are sure about the contents. Viruses often attach and are sent automatically via a sender's address book without the sender's knowledge.

  3. Exercise caution accepting file downloads from strangers in chat rooms or when using instant messenger programs. These are common ways of infecting your system and may give anyone on the Internet unrestricted access to your computer, all keystrokes that you type, and all of your data files.

  4. Install current versions of Penn's supported anti-virus software. The software and configuration instructions are distributed on the PennConnect CD, available from the Computing Resource Center, or can be downloaded from the virus web site.

  5. Update your virus definitions weekly (Windows) or monthly (Mac). Anti-virus software vendors make easy-to-install updated virus definition files available regularly to combat new viruses. For instructions on updating your software and for recent virus alerts, go to the virus web site.


For assistance

If you have a virus or need help downloading or installing anti-virus software, the following resources are available:

  • Students in College Houses: Contact your information technology advisor (ITA).

  • Students living off-campus, in Sansom East and West, and in the Greek houses: Contact First Call (215) 573-4778 or visit the Computing Resource Center (CRC), M-F from 1-4:30 PM, at Suite 202 Sansom Place West.

  • Faculty and staff: Contact your local support provider (LSP). If you don't know who your local support provider is, consult the support lookup table.

--Bob Barron, Senior IT Support Specialist, ISC Client Services Group


Please note: This material is no longer current and appears online for archival purposes only.
Use the search and navigation tools above to locate more up-to-date materials, if they exist.


Please note: This material is no longer current and appears online for archival purposes only.
Use the search and navigation tools above to locate more up-to-date materials, if they exist.
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