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E-mail Viruses, Hoaxes, Phishing, & Hyperlink Safety

The hyperlinks below lead you to GREAT Internet sites dealing with virus safety and hoaxes. Please use these to combat the incessant "scary" virus-warning emails you get.

Symantec AntiVirus Research Center - A provider of computer virus information and antivirus resources.
CERT/CC Advisories - Description with solutions and recommendations for known computer virus problems.
Computer Incident Advisory Capability (CIAC) - Internet hoax site - describes known computer virus hoaxes.

Hyperlinks can be damaging too. This text information is to help you cope with spurious hyperlinks you may encounter.

Oftentimes, you'll find hyperlinks (words or phrases [often blue and underlined] that link to Internet sites) in e-mail messages. Hyperlinks can be used as handy shortcuts to online areas. However, scammers often use hyperlinks to direct you to password-stealing Web sites. The e-mails and Web pages may claim that you've won a prize, gotten an online card, or encourage you to sign up for testing of a new product or service. NEVER click on hyperlinks in e-mail sent to you by strangers.

To participate, these scammers may ask you to enter your ISP (or VIN) screen name and passwords. Some Web pages may automatically download computer viruses or Trojan Horse programs to your computer. These programs can damage your computer files or send your password back to the scammer. With your screen name and password, the scammer can sign on to your ISP (or VIN) account, read your e-mail, send e-mail in your name, post messages on the message boards in your name, etc.

To keep your computer and your ISP (and VIN) accounts safe, NEVER click on hyperlinks in e-mail sent to you by strangers. And NEVER enter your screen name and password into a Web page unless it is an official VIN Web page. Official VIN Web pages can be found at at

To play it safe, you can display the destination of the hyperlinks before you click on them:

First, on AOL, simply position the cursor over the hyperlink. AOL will display the hyperlink's destination. Links to Web pages will show the Web address or URL. Links to areas on AOL will say "On AOL only". Mac users: hold down the Control key, click on the hyperlink, then choose View address. The hyperlink address will appear.

Second, with many Internet Service Providers (and AOL), you can place your mouse cursor over the hyperlink, right click on it and a list box will pop up. Click "Properties" and the URL appears showing you the web address.
Remember! Displaying the destination, before clicking on a hyperlink, is helpful if you're not sure if you should follow the link.

If you have ANY questions, ASK! VIN is here to help you!

Email:  Telephone: 800-700-4636