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There are fears that another virus more virulent than ILOVEYOU could spark another global epidemic, according to data security experts, Norman Data Defense Systems. Norman claims that Net users should be on the lookout for a "new and destructive email worm", with "FRIEND MESSAGE" as the subject of the e-mail. If activated, the worm will delete all files in the Windows directory, the Windows System directory and the Windows Temp directory. The result is that Windows will need to be re-installed, Norman said. Norman experts claim it is based on the same principles as the "Love Bug", but totally rewritten. There are no confirmed reports of the virus doing any damage as yet but Norman says "the potential for very fast spreading is high". The Friend Message reads: "If you receive this message remember forever: A precious friend in all the world like only you! So think that!" After this, it proceeds to e-mail itself to all addresses in the Outlook Address book. The virus does not overwrite any files on the hard disk with itself, nor does it try to download anything from the Web. Apparently. And in what can only be described as an absolute stroke of luck, the latest version Norman Virus Control can detect the bug. ®

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