Virus alerts: one sublime, one ridiculous

Games company Electronic Arts has hit back at accusations that its games are transporting the malignant CIH virus.

The CIH virus triggers on the 26th of each month and attempts to over-write the flash BIOS found on new machines. In doing so, it renders the machine unusable and completes the injury by overwriting the hard disk with garbage.

Running a program on a infected computer on any day other than the 26th will cause that program to be infected. However, as Electronic Arts points out, programs that are run from a write-only CDROM cannot be over-written, causing the virus to trigger a 'blue screen of death'.

Product support manager Ian Hancock claims to have received "thousands of calls" related to the virus. The strain, first discovered in July by watchdog Dr Solomon, has "nothing to do with our software," Hancock said.

Seperately, ZDNet offices received yet another hoax email claiming a virus is embedded in an email with the subject line "Win a Holiday". The email went on to claim the warning originated from Microsoft.

Microsoft did not offer comment despite repeated calls to their offices. Presumably they believe it is as ridiculous as we do.