Protecting viruses from spreading


Jul 19, 2003
There is a way to prevent yourself and friends against viruses and worms that spread through "e-mail address harvesting".
All you do is add something to every address in your address book that makes it invalid. Here's how:

Step 1: Go into the Windows Address book or where ever your e-mail address book is such as inside your mail client in Mozilla and Thunderbird's case.
Step 2: Open up every entry in your address book and add in something such as "nospam" or "novirus".
Every entry may look like this:
Or this:

Then everytime you send an e-mail to someone in the book, Edit out whatever you added.

What makes this work is that e-mail harvesting worms and viruses take e-mail addresses from your address books and then it sends itself to everyone in there in the form noted down in the database. But what happens if it sends it to an invalid e-mail address? When it sends it out, The server will register an error such as "Invalid Address" and send back error messages.

Those errors will probaly clog up the SMTP of the virus and proably disable it.

This is a good way of protecting your friends from viruses that send itself to address book e-mail addresses.


OSNN Senior Addict
Jan 10, 2004
or you could just save yourself that massive waste of time and use a good anti-virus app & or mailwasher :p


Tech Junkie
Apr 19, 2002
I've read this before. Could be useful, but I've never had the need to use it. Let's see...when was the last time I actually had a virus? So long ago, I can't even remember.


Glaanies script monkey
Political User
Feb 16, 2003
this isn't useful. All it would do is clog up the bandwith of the mail servers of the ISPs of the poor saps with the viruses. Same thing as those annoying alert emails sent to you saying you've been sending infected emails, when it isn't even you sending them.


OSNN Senior Addict
Jan 19, 2004
The best way to prevent your friends from getting one of these little virus buggers is to just not use the address book period. No addys in the book means no way for the virus to send itself out.

Personally I keep a locked personal diary with the email addys for everyone. That way if I forget one I can look it up and type it in.

Members online

Latest posts

Latest profile posts

Terrahertz wrote on Electronic Punk's profile.
Yo fellas.
Electronic Punk wrote on Sazar's profile.
Where are you buddy? :(
Perris Calderon wrote on Electronic Punk's profile.
Hey ep!

All good with me, applying for microsoft mvp right now, should have done this a while ago.

Notifications don't work, I only found your response by comming back to hunt up some threads, if you want, give me your email address so we can keep in touch easier, mine is perriscalderon at gmail
Perris Calderon wrote on Electronic Punk's profile.
Ep, glad to see you come back and tidy up...did want to ask a one day favor, I want to enhance my resume , was hoping you could make me administrator for a day, if so, take me right off since I won't be here to do anything, and don't know the slightest about the board, but it would be nice putting "served administrator osnn", if can do, THANKS

Been running around Quora lately, luv it there
Electronic Punk wrote on Perris Calderon's profile.
All good still mate?

Forum statistics

Latest member