Software slated as vulnerable to viruses

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Software slated as vulnerable to viruses

Cliff Saran


Cliff Saran

Experts have slammed the software industry for allowing a virus such as Love Bug to wreak havoc on desktop computers connected to the Internet.

Simon Moores, chairman of the Windows Forums user association, said, "The very power of desktop PCs is a threat [to corporate security]." Moores said that while users make very little use of the software on their desktop computers they would be reluctant to use something less powerful. "The software industry is not good at exercising common sense. It needs to review the applications people need to have on their desktops."

Geoff Petherick, of user body UKCMG, said, "The Love Bug is another example of software over-engineering."

The root of the problem is scripting, a powerful feature of modern desktop software that allows IT departments to automate frequent tasks. Microsoft's Visual Basic Script, a feature of the Outlook e-mail software, was the mechanism the Love Bug virus used to run an illegal program on users' PCs.

Phil Cross, developer marketing manager at Microsoft, said scripts were a useful tool for IT departments and argued that a user receiving a script in an e-mail attachment could choose whether or not to run it.

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