CyberWoLfman's ActiveWorlds Experience!
Password stealing bots and other trojan horse programs and viruses.
Okay, for those who ignored my warning about accepting files from people instead of downloading them from a site like http://www.download.com, there's a password stealing bot program that's being given out to people who are a little too trusting for their own good. They're being told something like the bot is a beta, and the person who created it wants them to try it out and get their opinion, or something along those lines. It's sometimes packaged in a zip file called betabot.zip, but the name could be different, or it could be an .exe program now. The point is, that if you download programs from other users, you take a great risk in doing so, because if it's like this program, it'll steal your password. It also changes the Windows host file so that when you run your ActiveWorlds program, it'll automatically give your citname and password out to the person that your AW program connects to after you've installed the suspious program. Even if you change your password, it'll still be given out, because it'll still try to connect to the wrong server, giving them the new password.
But all hope is not lost. According to those who know about these things, the solution is to delete the bot program and to change the name of the file in your Windows folder called hosts, or delete it entirely. (The file, not the Windows folder. That would be bad...) Then you start up ActiveWorlds again, and change your citizen password. Another thing you can do to make it harder for this kind of thing to happen is to back up your important ActiveWorlds files like chat.txt, contacts.txt, telegram.dat, telegram.idx, and teleport.txt onto a CD (or into a new folder like aw after you create a folder called backups off of your main drive), then uninstall ActiveWorlds. Then create a new folder called awvr or whatever but name it something else besides that (or ActiveWorlds) that you'll recognize as having ActiveWorlds in it just in case the person who made the password stealing program sees this page and decides to code his next little surprise to search for that folder. After that, go to their Web site at http://www.activeworlds.com and download the latest version of their browser into that new folder, then install it to that folder, making sure that when it asks you where to install it to you select the new folder by either browsing to it, or typing it into the box. Please pass this page's location out to your AW friends and other AW users so they'll be informed. And remember, the person you're talking to may not be who you think they are...
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