Posted by: bhalley | 04/05/2010

Before You Forward that E-mail

I am sure many of you have received e-mails from friends warning not to open an e-mail with the subject line … because it will delete everything on your computer.  Or how about the forward this e-mail and Microsoft will pay you so much per forward because they are tracking it.   And many of the e-mails state that it was reported on CNN or MSNBC or some other news source.  And my favorite is the one where they state they have checked it out on www.snopes.com.

The e-mails like this are in themselves a self-generating virus of such.  The reason I say that is the size of the e-mail and number of forwards it quickly adds up and clogs the internet.  Consider the Saving the Soldier e-mail that many of you may have received.  When I received it the size was 41Kb (kilobytes).  Add it up when it is forwarded and you will see what I mean.

Message received by you – 41K  — Forwarded to 10 people – 410k of traffic

Message received by the 10 you sent to – 410k  — They forward to 10 people (total of 100) – 4.1MB of traffic

They forward to 10 each (total of 1000) – 41MB  — and so on.

That is after 4 forwards, and how many messages get forwarded more than that.    When anything says it is verified by Snopes still check it out because 90% are not and are designed to generate a lot of traffic.  And that doesn’t include the e-mail growing when it gets forwarded because most don’t remove the previous e-mail information and it keeps adding the forwarding headers to the message size.

Snopes is the best place to check and can give you history on the e-mail.  And if you cannot find e-mail them with the information and they will respond as to whether it is real or not.

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