Fake or real?


Tom Moers

Is a sender with an address "support.msdn.com" sending an email with
an"Upgrade.exe" file attached legitimate?



Bruce Chambers

Greetings --

What you received is either a very common malicious hoax or the
output of a computer infected by one of several wide-spread, mass
emailing worms. The most widely-known are:




Microsoft never has, does not currently, and never will email
unsolicited security patches. At the most, if, and only if, you
subscribe to their security notification newsletter, they will send
you an email informing you that a new patch is available for

Microsoft Policies on Software Distribution

Information on Bogus Microsoft Security Bulletin Emails

How to Tell If a Microsoft Security-Related Message Is Genuine

Any and all legitimate patches and updates are readily available
at http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com/. (Notice that this is the true
URL, rather than the bogus one that may have been contained in the
email you received.) Any messages that point to any other source(s) or
claim to have the patch attached are bogus.

You're receiving these emails because your email address is in
the address book of someone infected with a worm, and/or because you
posted your real email address somewhere on-line, either in a forum
accessible to the public and spambots, such as Usenet, or on an
untrustworthy web site that subsequently sold your address as part of
a mailing list. One thing you can do is notify _everyone_ with whom
you've ever corresponded via email that one or more of them may be
infected with a mass emailing worm, and should take the appropriate

There's probably no way of blocking all of the bogus messages, but
you can greatly reduce the number you get by creating a rule, based
upon the most commonly used subject lines, to delete the emails from
the server without ever downloading them.

Bruce Chambers

Help us help you:

You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on
having both at once. -- RAH

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