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Responding to an infected executable

What if you saw an executable file in your e-mail and used Viruscan, which detected it to be a virus? I have this problem right now and don't know what I should do. Will delete solve this problem?

If my malicious code detector found anything it would first quarantine that file or delete it based on my specifications. Since you have not enabled this option, I would recommend deleting it without opening or reading it. If you are using Outlook, turn OFF the preview option, highlight the e-mail, hold Shift and press delete. This will removed or delete the e-mail without first attempting to read or open. If you are using another e-mail software, look up the same option.

If you know the virus/malicious code type and name, try and find the cleaning tool if there is one. Otherwise, trust your local antivirus program to do the job for you.

I do not recommend trying to capture or save the virus. You would only be asking for trouble.

For more information on this topic, visit these other SearchSecurity.com resources:
Best Web Links: Malware
Ask the Expert: Keeping unauthorized executables off the network
Security Policies Tip: Executable e-mail attachments -- Educate the end user

This was last published in June 2002

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