Virus Hoaxes of the Early Internet | Nostalgia Nerd

13 sep 2020
101 941 visningar

Head to ​ to save 10% off your first purchase of a website or domain using code NOSTALGIANERD....Viruses have been with us for decades. But what about virus hoaxes? At one point our inboxes seemed more rife with warnings than we knew what to do with. All these seemingly problematic messages doing the rounds, some which would destroy our computer simply if we read the text on screen! Well let's explore some of them, including;
The Good Times Virus
Bill Gates Prize Chain
🔗Video Links🔗

🏆 Support 🏆
Support my channel, get exclusive videos & perks, as well as an ad and sponsor free experience at from just $1
🏪 NN Shop & Affiliate Links! 🏪
My eBay Shop: (Now Re-open!)
My Retro Tech book: (2nd edition is out!)
Desk Shelves for Retro Computers: (Because you're worth it)
🍻 Share/Like 🍻
If you wish to share this video in forums, social media, on your website, or ANYWHERE else, please do so! It helps tremendously with the channel! Also, giving a thumb up or down also helps with visibility on SEworld. Many thanks!
📟 Subcribe 📟
Click to Subscribe:
📱 Join me on Social Media 📱
🎥 Equipment 🎥
Lumix G6 with Vario 14-42mm Lens
Nikon D3200 with 40mm Macro
Corel Video Studio Ultimate 2019
Corel Paint Shop Pro 2019
Blue Snowball Microphone
📜 Resources 📜
In video links and references are provided where possible. If you believe I have forgotten to attribute anything, please let me know (drop me an email via. the about page on SEworld or send me a tweet), so I can add it here. Apologies if I have missed anything out, it takes time to make these videos and therefore it can be easy to forget things or make a mistake.
Errors and omissions excepted.
Some material in this video may be used under Fair Dealing / Fair Use. Where under section 107 of the Copyright Act of 1976 (UK: Sections 29 and 30 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988), allowance is made for purposes including parody, quotation, criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, education and research. Fair Dealing / Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing.

  • warning! do not read this message, it can cause severe harm to your brain.

    rgerberrgerber6 dagar sedan
  • global warming is gonna flood the earth by the year 2015

    kalo rabbitkalo rabbit21 dag sedan
  • Man, this video was only published in September 2020? It feels like two years ago...

    John RogersJohn Rogers21 dag sedan
  • 9:32 holy shit that's my birthday

    Jesica's New ChannelJesica's New Channel24 dagar sedan
  • put this on 4 video comments within 15 mins,if u do, sum one u love will surprise u sum how!! If u don’t , u will lose ur love.!!

    Swagaito GaiSwagaito Gai28 dagar sedan
  • the real virus was the friends we made along the way

  • Seeing that Budweiser Frogs screensaver again sure was a blast of nostalgia. I remember spending hours downloading stupid screensavers as a kid...

    Cinos RuddertailCinos RuddertailMånad sedan
  • Wanna know another virus that's a hoax? Covid 19. Don't deny it, it's the truth. The government are just trying to scare you into following them and bring in the new world order.

    CoolDudeClemCoolDudeClemMånad sedan
  • Oh wow the "this us from a trusted source" bullshit has been around since 1997. I thought it was a more recent fake news thing 😂

    MehhhMehhhMånad sedan
  • I genuinely knew people in the 1990's who thought computer viruses floated around in the air like an _actual_ virus...

    Niklas SNiklas SMånad sedan
  • omg I had the Budweiser screensaver on our old family room PC lol I was like 11, obviously couldn’t even legally drink, never tasted beer in my life at the time and had no reason to want to....yet I had the screensaver and thought it was the coolest thing ever. I don’t even remember how I downloaded it, but I remember my friend told me about it when we were at school. I had forgotten all about that commercial, and looking back on it now, I don’t know why or how it was so successful.

    B BB BMånad sedan
  • I miss it.

    Robert WyattRobert Wyatt2 månader sedan
  • There is no pandemic. Your fear is the Virus. Soon you will understand when there is gonna be a WWiii In Israel

    GandalfGandalf2 månader sedan
  • At least some of these hoaxes were probably created by employees of software companies involved with developing and selling anti-virus software. Fear is the best form of marketing, and not just for antivirus and antimalware software companies, this is a universal rule.

    EyesWideOpenEyesWideOpen2 månader sedan
  • Good Times.........Good Times.

    prismstudios001prismstudios0012 månader sedan
  • What? The world IS going to end in 2002!

    Hobbesian Troll LinesHobbesian Troll Lines2 månader sedan
  • They always blamed the “pop ups” that gave them a virus

    FunluFunlu3 månader sedan
  • VIRUS ALERT! Delete immediately before someone gets hurt! Forward this message unto everybody now!

    Doc. Tear PopperDoc. Tear Popper3 månader sedan
  • A virus so bad it’ll leave dirty underpants on your coffee table overnight.

    prismstudios001prismstudios0014 månader sedan
  • Dead cow apparently has a beef with the world in generaal......Gotcha !

    prismstudios001prismstudios0014 månader sedan
  • I always use macs so I NEVER get a virus. 🤍 the MacBook

    220 на себя Jay220 на себя Jay4 månader sedan
  • Was expecting the video to end with COVID ;)

    BB4 månader sedan
  • The last one could be avoided with simple math $607 + $597 = $1,014 which does not leave $9 or $10 for a stiff drink, but -$14. Surely Bill Gates could solve that or at least use a calculator 🤣

    LilacDoeLilacDoe4 månader sedan
  • Fun fact: despite us modern tech-savvy folks chuckling at a software virus destroying hardware there _was_ a time it was possible. A virus written to run on systems with early Hercules graphics adapters (back before they had safety measures to prevent unsafe hardware settings from software) was able to burn out the attached monitor by sending signals to the electron beam that would cause it to basically melt itself.

    Christopher FowlerChristopher Fowler4 månader sedan
  • Geocities was pretty awesome back in the day. I used to have a Dragon Ball Z website when I was a kid and thought I was a total boss!

    SylentEchoSylentEcho4 månader sedan
  • "We need people who will fall for it" And those people are called "Boomers"

    DaveTheBabyDaveTheBaby4 månader sedan
  • So glad that in 2020 we've now evolved passed the days of myths and hoaxes on the internet........ :/

    Mad Mental HibbyMad Mental Hibby4 månader sedan
  • Talk about virus hoaxes .. the greatest of them all ever is going on right now. But do stay inside and wear a mask, even during sex.

    statinskillstatinskill4 månader sedan
  • 3¼mips...eggnchips®€cu™ zxc

    PC Socket 7 Intel 430vx txPC Socket 7 Intel 430vx tx4 månader sedan
  • Some of these are still doing the rounds, who remembers the one about a virus that will burn out your hard drive and destroy "zero sector"!? lol it could also blow up your speakers too!

    nzoomednzoomed5 månader sedan
  • those middle age individuals who dont have a clue on what are they doing are still the major problem with today hoaxes

    Allan NevesAllan Neves5 månader sedan
  • that leadup to squarespace from geocities made me laugh harder than i should have ^^

    neinnein5 månader sedan
  • Oh this one brought back so many memories from my time dealing with this as a repair technician! lol

    BlackRatt74BlackRatt745 månader sedan
  • I bet Mike Rochenel sells 1200 baud modems and was trying to get everyone to upgrade their network cards. I think the whole thing is ridiculous as no one needs a modem that fast. What can you possibly need that would require such a speed on the internet? What's next, upgrading our hard drives to 1Gb?! I have a huge 100Mb hard drive that I will never use. I would sure like to win free AOL until 1998!

    sinn0100sinn01006 månader sedan
  • Not to hijack your sponsor, but if you liked the idea of Geocities, try Neocities. It is free, static hosting (for people who want to code their own site)

    G TG T6 månader sedan
  • The mid-video ads are SO ANNOYING. Just put them at the beginning.

    the slunchthe slunch6 månader sedan
  • Anyone else have a Wierd Al song in their heads now?

    Not Leaving Las Vegas - a Vegas Video ChannelNot Leaving Las Vegas - a Vegas Video Channel6 månader sedan
  • 2020, if anything, is the best year to start spreading end of times propaganda. Pandemic.

    Jared HoechstJared Hoechst6 månader sedan
  • Are you asking to be demonitized with this video? 😂

    Peter Horrox PhotographyPeter Horrox Photography6 månader sedan
  • The combination of a Happy Holidays sign off and the guy at the end has me dyingggg!!

    Chris DChris D6 månader sedan
  • 4:08 this clip typing into a html tag made me giggle

    CoolAsFreyaCoolAsFreya6 månader sedan
  • ignorance is a plague all its own.

    NightRogueNightRogue6 månader sedan
  • If you want to know when the world shall end, I can tell you. Just..... for a million dollars. Terms and Conditions apply* *The date may vary wildly from the date stated by the medium. The medium is not responsible for any mistakes in his predictions or liable to any inconvenience or damage caused by his statement and by reading this you are agreeing to be responsible for all your actions.Read and act on this at your risk only.

    Darshan GaonkarDarshan Gaonkar7 månader sedan
  • So they also had Corona back in the 90s, where the fear is far worse than the disease. However, software can potentially damage hardware. When certain ports are raised and lowered (and the hardware not foresees this) it can cause short circuits. There were certain “lethal pokes”. Especially prone were CRT screens that you could oversteer the electron beam causing permanent harm. Drive gears and steppermotors can also be subject to damage. If you keep stepping despite an end switch is triggered. Can damage cogs or even burn-out the motor. Now mice are no subject to these sorts of attacks.

    Raymond DoetjesRaymond Doetjes7 månader sedan
  • hello i'm the sandman

    Bill GatesBill Gates7 månader sedan
  • virus hoaxes of today: global pandemic, wear a mask, stay home, social distance,

    MarzhMarzh7 månader sedan
  • All of these were essentially "modern" extensions of the chain letter. Don't forget they were slightly changed for chat programs like AIM, etc. And then into SEworld comments like it was the Ring VHS tape curse. The Microsoft $1000 email has essentially continued as the Nigerian/Embassy scam, and posts on facebook about "privacy" or "you aren't my real friend unless you say this..." status update posts keep the chain letter alive today. Do your part, end the chain letter by ignoring all of these. ...Be sure to post this information to atleast 5 other youtube videos and email 10 of your friends or you'll never get married!!!!111wtfBBQ

    Philip SowersPhilip Sowers7 månader sedan
  • There was a recent one of these memetic viral information things on Instagram called the Blue Whale challenge... (reply if you want more, I'll edit it here)

    LONS TeamLONS Team7 månader sedan
  • So, this is where Weird Al got all the ideas for his Virus Alert song! :-D

    NTICompass ComputersNTICompass Computers7 månader sedan
  • phew. my 24bit sound card is safe.

    Felicity ChevalierFelicity Chevalier7 månader sedan
  • Weird Al made a great song based on the Badtimes hoax, called "Virus Alert" it's quite good.

    QwerasdQwerasd7 månader sedan
  • The beautiful part is, those that got gud @ hunting down elusive porn during this time period not only learned how to get what they want cia search engine criteria, but also avoid most if not all of the internet's pitfalls. It was akin to avoiding hazards in Mario to get the Princess.

    TonyBManTonyBMan7 månader sedan
  • Your channel is the first time I ever heard PKXARC (P.K. ex-ARC) pronounced "Zark"

    John DługoszJohn Długosz7 månader sedan
  • I tried to download a virus and got error 404 lol

    buck pylesbuck pyles7 månader sedan
  • I'm disappointed that you left out my favorite category of these hoaxes. There were a few that went around warning people that a new virus was making the rounds, and that you should check in the C:\Windows\Command folder for a specific file to see if you're infected. And went on to say that deleting the file in question was often successful in cleaning the infection. Everyone receiving that email *had* the file, so they panicked, deleted it, and warned all their friends. And when the computer failed to boot up the next time, well... they obviously weren't quite quick enough to detect it. Another fun category was the "honor virus". It was an email virus working on the honor system. It requested that you forward it to all your contacts, and then delete a bunch of files from your computer.

    Edward BartonEdward Barton7 månader sedan

    -Arkaiid--Arkaiid-7 månader sedan
  • Ah, the good old days when viruses just threatened to erase your hard drive and not hold your files for ransom, turn your computer into a botnet for criminal activity, destroy nuclear reactors, or rig global elections.

    Jackson MileurJackson Mileur7 månader sedan
  • nostalgia nerd has a secret data streem in his youtube videos which allows him to take over control of your browing history. this is where he gets all the info from he uses in his videos.

    Max MustermannMax Mustermann7 månader sedan
  • 13:05 Pokemon gold space world demo ditto evolution

    ThecommentatoThecommentato7 månader sedan
  • You wouldn't download a car?

    pegcity4evapegcity4eva7 månader sedan
  • I owe quite a lot to the bud frogs hoax. It's what got me interested in viruses.

    NoxturnalNoxturnal7 månader sedan
  • So I paused the video so I could get back to work, and noticed that the next title was the Budweiser Frogs screensaver. I actually had that screensaver for a little while, and vaguely recalled hearing afterward that there was a virus in it. Good to know I didn't inadvertently download a virus onto my parents' PC.

    stupid5pinstupid5pin7 månader sedan
  • How did "Mike Rochanel" give it away?

    Leading AuctionsLeading Auctions7 månader sedan
  • look at these boomers actually opening their email

    deathbydevicedeathbydevice7 månader sedan
  • I'd love to see a video on old 90's Phreaking culture. Beige box's, blue box's etc. The evolution of Network manipulation.

    James DrummondJames Drummond7 månader sedan
  • don't think I'll ever understand why someone would think that sending a url (particularly one which nobody would enter accidentally ever) out to everyone would be an effective way of keeping others from it... when I was a kid I found out about an incredibly morbid, bloody, and violent flash game which was basically just a torture simulator in the line of "kick the buddy". it was pretty awesome for its time actually, nestled away in the adult section of newgrounds. I'd never have found had it not been for a news bit about it!

    hang da clownhang da clown7 månader sedan
  • 2:34 the only thing I'm fearing is that guy's freakishly long nosferati index finger.

    hang da clownhang da clown7 månader sedan
  • 3:58 Well, at least he's not an anti-vaxx.

    Game HeroGame Hero7 månader sedan
  • Unfortunately, so long as the mantra "For every idiot-proof system, there is at least one system-proof idiot" continues to apply (i.e. forever), such messages will continue to propagate. As an example, you wouldn't believe the number of times my wife has been convinced that she has won the Irish Lottery (despite never having played it!) based on emails she has received!

    Kevin ReedKevin Reed7 månader sedan
  • Funny how quickly people will believe the ridiculous, it all about trust in the source of the information, not the actual falidity of said information people judge.

    jamie noonanjamie noonan7 månader sedan
  • Viral hoaxes of the Modern Internet: Covid19

    TinfoilTomcatTinfoilTomcat7 månader sedan
  • I didn't know the Democrat party and climate alarmist could be classified as religious groups...we hear from them how the world will end every week since 2001 and longer.

    toasteee252toasteee2527 månader sedan
  • How to stop people from downloading cracks of your software: Call it a virus.

    WadelDeeWadelDee7 månader sedan
  • Has there ever been a virus that simply made a frightening text appear, like "YOU GOT A VIRUS" or something, but doesn't do anything otherwise?

    WadelDeeWadelDee7 månader sedan
  • Imagine cracking a game and distributing it over the internet, only for your crack to be hijacked and infected with a virus...

    WadelDeeWadelDee7 månader sedan
  • speaking of bad processes. people REALLY REALLY REALLY! have to name them something a person that didnt design the system can actually understand and read. thats 90% of those hoaxes fixed right there! a simple rename.

    Raffia16th BlazeRaffia16th Blaze7 månader sedan
  • >CDC holy shit i havent heard this one for a while, basically 4chan before it was. also I still get such emails so... and people fall for it. "HELP I GOT A VIRUS!"

    Silver SpoonSilver Spoon7 månader sedan
  • 12:25 there was a fault in early Pentium II motherboards where a software instruction could cause the board to shut off the CPU fan. Although no virus ever used it, and Intel did quickly correct it with a firmware update, it could in theory have been abused to fry the CPU

    SteelRodentSteelRodent7 månader sedan
  • Who is hogging the knowledge

    Useless uselessnessUseless uselessness7 månader sedan
  • the fact that Brits say noughties for the two thousands is amazing

    RannRann7 månader sedan
  • Beto ORourke, and myself were in cDc. I also contributed on back orifice.

    David MiscaviageDavid Miscaviage7 månader sedan
  • P.T. Barnum's slogan will never die. I remember just about all of the hoaxes mentioned in this video. I'm not sure how gullible you have to be to think a downloaded e-mail or its attachment could somehow possibly kill your lawn. Then again, as a fan of Stranger Things, I guess anything's possible. :)

    Don CostelloDon Costello7 månader sedan
  • That is a hella strong virus when it eats your anti-virus software

    megamanyoutubermegamanyoutuber7 månader sedan
  • My favourite part of this video is the near-corpsing he did when reading out that your time and anguish is valued only at $43

    Jonathan FaberJonathan Faber7 månader sedan
  • air-oh-knee-us yw

    sean sullivansean sullivan7 månader sedan
  • Back in the late 90s nobody wanted to take my screensavers that I made in QB 4.5. Then I realized they thought I was trying to send them a virus. LOL. The virus spam I remember the most was the sector zero one.

    billyjoejimbob75billyjoejimbob757 månader sedan
  • My grandpa still sends me crap like this.

    WranderousWranderous7 månader sedan
  • That very "desirable" screensaver: The Budweiser Frogs

    Gerald ChurchillGerald Churchill7 månader sedan
  • Never heard of bad times before, except for a great song by Laika, where they used that warning text as lyrics. My life is more complete now the pieces of the puzzle are connected.

    Roman BokijRoman Bokij7 månader sedan
  • About Billy Gates and the “coof cure”, I’m sure it started out as a joke much like one of the hoaxes you’ve covered in this video only for some normies to stumble on it and think it’s actually a real conspiracy. That being said, I don’t much care for being among the first folks to try it out once it’s released, so I’ll leave it to you to test it out and report back on the results. 😏

    Jolis ParsecJolis Parsec7 månader sedan
  • I don’t like the new LGR. All the baked-in ads and the countless stock footage has killed it for me.

    BenediktBenedikt7 månader sedan
  • Fortune is in your future if you reply to this comment with your credit card number, exp date, security number, you mother's maiden name, and your social security #

    Ramen, Literally RamenRamen, Literally Ramen7 månader sedan
    • Don't do this it's a joke

      Ramen, Literally RamenRamen, Literally Ramen7 månader sedan
  • The hoaxes created just as many problems as real viruses. People blindly following instructions to email everyone in their address list created huge amounts of SMTP traffic.

    paulanderson79paulanderson797 månader sedan
  • I know of viruses that can brick components or destory the entire PC, they are called: Fallout 3/Fallout New Vegas.

    coal jamescoal james7 månader sedan
  • weird al's virus alert song

    Douglas WalrathDouglas Walrath7 månader sedan
  • Watching this while suffering from a virus. Covid ain't no hoax. It sucks.

    Ryan WhitelawRyan Whitelaw7 månader sedan
    • @paulanderson79 oh fuck off with the exaggerated numbers shite. There is no grand conspiracy.

      Ryan WhitelawRyan Whitelaw7 månader sedan
    • Poor bloke, get well ASAP. It's definitely not a hoax, but I do think it's being exaggerated (in terms of numbers) in order to wrest a lot of control from us.

      paulanderson79paulanderson797 månader sedan
  • I just want to clarify that although that chainmail they started was a hoax, Cult of the Dead Cow was a real group of hackers who had actually released a fair amount of malicious software. I'm familiar with their work, because my family attempted to use one of their programs to monitor my online activities on a shared computer. I discovered it because I was in the habit of deleting and rolling back recently modified files after browsing LGBT support forums before I came out. It was easily defeated by write protecting the logs it was keeping, so there was no data in it to exfiltrate when it was scheduled to dial home. This lead them to believe that I was simply AFK during those times rather than conducting the private communications that they were attempting to monitor. I recall dissecting the program to find the collective's name, and doing additional research to determine whether there might be any other hidden functions in the monitoring software. Its disguise was very superficial. It showed in the process manager as a second instance of a program that was supposed to run only a single instance, and rather overtly announced its name and that of the collective in the system registry. Apparently, the program wasn't designed for use against targets with more than a basic end-user level of skill, and my family had severely underestimated my paranoia.

    Star CrasherStar Crasher7 månader sedan
  • Virus alert! Delete immediately before someone gets hurt! Forward this message onto everybody.

    Ryu AzukuRyu Azuku7 månader sedan
  • My grandma would always fall for these. My friends and I would laugh our asses off (and pick on her a little) about it.

    Aaron ClarkAaron Clark7 månader sedan
  • i NEVER got the reason people thought the Budweiser frogs were funny/cool..... . seriously one of the dumbest ads ive ever seen.....

    kain hallkain hall7 månader sedan