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Kit Menkin

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(20) Y2K " World is Coming to an End" Hoax

The world is not coming to an end. All the e-mails and warnings are sometimes scary because most are a big hoax. If you are PC based, most likely you are on Microsoft*** and can download patches. You can also find out if your software provider has a patch or is compliant. Most off the shelf software is or can be made compliant.

This is a serious problem, but is being solved, can be solved, and there is no need to panic. Use this time to fully look at your computer or system. Have a consultant come in and look at your tape back-up procedure, and give you some advice. Turn this into a positive, optimistic, spring cleaning, if you will. Budget it in to have a consultant come in and give you some goals for computer efficiency and maintenance.

Don't believe all the junk you are hearing that there is going to be a rush on the banks for cash in December 1999.

One of the most frightening is from Chuck Colson. Calling for people to not only withdraw their money, but stockpile gold and firearms, that doomsday is here. The fear is creating reaction from airlines, banks, and threatens to become more serious than the original problem.

Yes, there is a problem. It can be solved. It is being solved. The software companies are working on it. You can find a posting of 129,000 programs that are compliant. You can get free patches for your computer, if you need them. And so what if a computer crashes, they do all the time now. I can't tell you how many times the one I connect at is down, or even lost something, that I have. The big users and most of we small users have tape back-ups.

The end of the world is not coming on Friday, December 31, 1999.

There is even a bi-monthly magazine promoted by Pat Boone, among others, to scare everyone about Y2K.

If you are concerned, have a computer consultant come in and look at your entire system and give you some advice, not just on Y2K, but regular maintenance of your system. It is my experience, people treat their computer system like a television set or copier. When it stops working, then they call someone in.

This is not good computer maintenance.

The good news, these hoaxes about the "World Coming to an End" should give everyone a "heads up" on their operating system. You should have a tape back up system, not a partial, and back-up 14 days in a row, plus once a month and every six month (either save one a month for six months or twelve months).

This is only a sub-nail sketch on the PC problems, and does not apply to very large systems or the seriousness of proprietary programs.

The purpose of this e-mail to illustrate the exaggeration and hoaxes being spread about is a serious problem. However, it is becoming the biggest exaggeration since the alleged Michelangelo Virus Hoax (you are all young enough to remember this about two).

Years ago when all the computers were supposedly infected ---all the computers would crash on Michelangelo's birthday---nothing happened, anywhere.

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