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Thursday, 1 November, 2001, 17:27 GMT
DVD cartoon spreads virus
CD being inserted into computer.
Careful, there may be a virus on that disk
A computer virus has been spread for the first time by a DVD.

The malicious program had been inadvertently included on a recently released disk featuring the cute crime-fighting trio known as the Powerpuff Girls.

Warner Brothers has now recalled all versions of the DVD bearing the Meet the Beat Alls episode of the popular cartoon series.

Before now, many companies have unintentionally distributed viruses on CDs and floppy disks. Some magazines have even accidentally included copies of viruses in cover disks.

Funlove virus

The virus hiding inside the Powerpuff Girls DVD is known as Funlove. It corrupts Windows programs and can cause computer systems to become unstable and crash more often.

Old viruses never die, they just lurk in dark corners and directories

Graham Cluley, Sophos
Graham Cluley, a spokesman for anti-virus company Sophos, said the Powerpuff Girls DVD had only been distributed in the US, but some people might have bought it while on holiday or ordered it via the net.

The virus is hiding in data files sitting alongside the Powerpuff Girls episodes on the DVD. The files let fans create screensavers and wallpaper for their PCs.

The virus does not affect DVD players, and will only infect a PC playing the disk if the additional software is installed and run.

People with up-to-date anti-virus software should avoid being infected, he said.

"Funlove has been around for a couple of years," said Mr Cluley, "which suggests that the people producing the DVD may not have been running up-to-date anti-virus software.

"Old viruses never die," he said, "they just lurk in dark corners and directories."

'Best ever episode'

The Meet the Beat Alls DVD is likely to have been popular since it went on sale in the US last month.

Believe be the best ever episode of the cartoon
Believed be the best ever episode of the cartoon
Many fans of Bubbles, Blossom and Buttercup believe it to be the best ever episode of the popular cartoon.

Buyers have been posting warnings on the internet about the DVD bearing the virus.

The title of the DVD is a pun on the Meet the Beatles title by the 1960s pop band. Much of the dialogue in the episode is based on Beatles lyrics.

The Powerpuff Girls debuted on the US Cartoon Network in 1999 and quickly gained a following for its quirky, and sometimes surreal, sense of humour.

See also:

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