A Year Ago: Downing Street struck by Russian virus

First published: Mon, 10 Apr 2000 14:30:40 GMT
Written by Will Knight, Contributor on

Russian nonsense proverbs plague Number 10

Number 10 Downing Street was last week infiltrated by a nonsensical Russian computer virus, according to press reports.

The virus was reportedly sent to the department within Number 10 that is responsible for spreading information about the threat of the millennium bug. This department is apparently so good at spreading information that, according to The Sunday Times, it immediately distributed the virus to every regional wing of the Central Office for Information (COI).

The macro virus, W97M/Proverb spreads between computers via email causing it to periodically spew forth unintelligible Russian proverbs.

"Never leave for tomorrow what can be drunk today," is one such pearl of wisdom. Another is, "a man is chasing a woman until she catches him."

This virus is not considered a serious risk by the anti-virus laboratories at Network Associates. It does not destroy data and is not particularly common.

A spokesman for Number 10 was unable to say whether the virus had been successfully thwarted, or if Downing Street was still suffering from inexplicable bouts of Russian wisdom.

Take me to the Virus Workshop

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