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"Sulfnbk.exe" Virus Hoax (***Note***)

The so-called "Sulfnbk.exe" virus hoax is not one of the older email hoaxes. It regularly shows up in one form or another commonly through email, bulletin boards, forums and news groups. Unfortunately, this one is a little more harmful than your average email hoax. The goal is to trick novice computer users into deleting "Sulfnbk.exe", a legitimate Windows file.

This virus is similar to the Teddy Bear hoax in that it attempts to trick recipients into deleting"Sulfnbk.exe" a MS Windows 95, 98 and Me utility program that is used to restore long file names, and should not be deleted. However, Sulfnbk.exe is not an important system file, and the computer should run normally even if the file is deleted. (see below for replacement instructions for this file).

Here is an example of a typical Sulfnbk.exe Hoax email:

----- Begin Example Email -----

Hello! I just got this letter from my friend and yes I had the virus as well please follow the directions to see if you have the virus and then follow the directions to get rid of it. Like my friend I am sorry that I passed it along as well.

Dear All: We received a virus on a message. I followed the instructions below and found that it had been spread to our computer. I followed the instructions and located the virus and was able to delete it. The bad news is that you probably have it, as you are in My Address book! More bad news is that my anti virus program did not detect this virus. The virus lies dormant for 14 days and then "kills" your hard drive.

Here is what to do. If you follow the instructions and then see that you have the virus, you need to send a similar e-mail to everyone in your address book.

Remove the virus by following these steps:

1. Go to "Start." Then to "Find" or "Search".
2. In the "Search for files or folders" type sulfnbk.exe -- this is the name of the virus.
3. In the "Look in" section, make sure you are searching Drive C.
4. Hit "Search" or "Find".
5. If your search finds this file, it will be an ugly blackish icon that will have the name sulfnbk.exe. DO NOT OPEN IT! If it does not show up on your first "Search", try a "New Search."
6. Right click on the file -- go down to "Delete" and left click.
7. You will be asked if you want to send the file to the Recycling Bin -- say "Yes".
8. Go to your Desktop (where all your icons are) and right click on the Recycle Bin and either manually delete the sulfnbk.exe program or empty the entire bin.
9. If you found the virus on your system, send this or a similar e-mail to all in your address book because this is how it is transferred.

Sorry for the trouble and my apologies for having unwittingly "infected" you. You'll want to check for this virus again for the next couple days until everyone in your address book has seen it and deleted it, otherwise, being in their address book, your PC will get infected all over again so don't forget to check!

----- End Example Email -----

An important rule of thumb here is to never delete a file based off of information provided in an email no matter who it comes from. Feel free to send us an email, enter a HelpDesk request, or give us a call. Remember many viruses and hoaxes are written to sounds like they come from some one you know or some one who knows what they are talking about.

If you have already deleted Sulfnbk.exe you can get detailed information by reading this Microsoft Knowledge Base article.