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Happy birthday

The Register takes note of the 25th anniversary of the personal computer virus with a story about the very first virus to infect the Apple II. Believed to be the work of a 15 year-old high school student, the Elk Cloner virus was released into the wild in 1982, well before the arrival of the first IBM PC or the Windows operating system.

AP has the story of an 11 year-old in North Carolina who was able to join MySpace by lying about her age. The story notes that politicians, such as North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper have made the safety of social networking sites like MySpace something of a "crusade," despite repeated warnings from Internet security experts that social networking sites are the wrong place to look for online predators and that the age verification and parental consent requirements many politicians are promoting would actually do more harm than good by giving anxious parents a false sense of security, even as predators gain easy access to social networking sites simply by using false names.

A new poll conducted by
InformationWeek shows 66% of U.S. respondents and 89% of Chinese respondents don’t believe computer security has improved over the past year. Fewer than half of Chinese respondents and only a third of those in the US saw data breaches as their biggest challenge, instead citing viruses, worms, spyware, malware, and spam.