Sophos Y2K virus update

January 04, 2000 Sophos Press Release

Sophos offices around the world reported no increase in anti-virus support calls by 19:00 GMT, 4th January 2000.

Sophos has been consistent during the run-up to the Year 2000 in its belief that there is simply no evidence that viruses will be any more of a problem over the Y2K period than on any other day of the year.

Some anti-virus companies predicted an "onslaught" of new viruses on January 3rd and 4th when many companies returned to work after the holiday break. However, Sophos reports that support calls are at their usual level, and there is no evidence of anything unusual.

Sophos criticised antivirus vendor Computer Associates for issuing several press releases on New Year's Eve warning about computer viruses - some of which were not in the wild, and posed no threat to users over the Y2K period.

Sophos's technical support departments have been manned continuously throughout the Y2K period, as they are every day of the year, 24 hours a day.

Report from Sophos, Australia:

No increase in support calls.

"There has been no increase in support calls - if anything it's been quieter than normal because so many customers are joining in the Millennium celebrations. After months of hype from other anti-virus vendors Sophos's prediction of business as normal has been proven to be true." - Sean Richmond, Head of Technical Support, Sophos Australia.

Report from Sophos, France:

No increase in support calls.

"French customers faced no increased threat from viruses over the Y2K period. Anti-virus companies who predicted a deluge of new viruses were proven wrong." - Patrice Le Mounier, Sophos France.

Report from Sophos, Germany:

No increase in support calls.

"Viruses don't care about what the date is, they infect customers regardless. There was never any reason to believe there would be an increased problem with viruses over Y2K. Judging by the normal level of support calls we received the Y2K virus threat did not emerge in Germany."- Christian Weber, Head of Technical Support, Sophos Germany.

Report from Sophos, United Kingdom:

No increase in support calls.

"Some anti-virus companies have been guilty of hyping up the Y2K virus problem. It seems the marketing departments of some companies are more interested in hyperbole than providing accurate, calm advice to their users. That attitude damages the credibility of the entire anti-virus industry." - Graham Cluley, Senior Technology Consultant, Sophos Anti-Virus.

Report from Sophos, USA:

No increase in support calls.

"We observed nothing unusual on the virus front over the Y2K period. Viruses are a problem 365 days a year, there was never any reason to believe they would pose any greater problem over the last few days" - John Williams, Head of Technical Support, Sophos USA.

Sophos presented a paper, "Is there a Y2K virus problem?" at the Virus Bulletin conference in Vancouver in October 1999 which debates many of these issues, and scrutinizes the hyperbole.