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Peddling rubbish is part and parcel of computer age

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Once a week, our local authority gets a dwindling number of us to put our cans, bottles and newspapers into a green plastic box thing.

It is a real pain because the box bears no relationship to the size or shapes of any of the above, but this is a ecofriendly column and so I had better mention www. wastetraders. com.It claims to be 'a global online waste trading service that connects waste producers with waste consumers - promoting the use of one's business waste for another's raw material.

Everything from timber to steel, polystyrene to packaging, masonry to sand - the more they trade, the more they save!' In theory it seems like a nice idea - but try getting your regular demolition subbie involved.

Talking of old rubbish, a mate sent me a virus warning about sulfnbk. exe.She had managed to find it in her Windows directory and had eradicated it.Then she found that the warning was a hoax and spent the next week trying to find out how to reinstate this perfectly innocent though unpleasantly named file. I had been on a sunny foreign shore while this was going on and on returning followed her frantic e-mail trail with some amusement.Even more so when it turned out that it's very likely that sulfnbk. exe was a redundant file the Windows code writers forgot to leave off the official distribution disk.

Don't quote me on that though.

The thing to do is to assume that all e-mail warnings of viruses are hoaxes unless they come from one of the antivirus companies you've signed up to.

If you are at all troubled by such a warning, which might have come automatically from an e-mail acquaintance, check out Google (or your favourite search engine) under virus hoaxes.The chances are it will be there.The most recent hoax is, apparently, a joke message from earlier this year urging people to delete all AOL files. So many people did so that this has entered the Web Hoax Hall of Fame.

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