The official MSN Messenger 8 beta release and Virkel.F virus
This entry below in December caused some recent confusion, with the official MSNM 8 beta, which has been released by Microsoft:
Virkel.F: Spoofed as an MSN Messenger beta 8 download
During December, virus writers used a social engineering scheme to trick users into loading a virus onto their PCs. The Virkel.F offered a new "leaked" MSNM version 8 which did not exist at the time. Users who clicked on the URL link in the message would download a virus rather than the MSNM 8 beta. Most likely this hostile website has been shutdown and copies of the Virkel.F worm do not exist in the wild.
Microsoft has now released MSNM beta 8. It is now safe to download and test MSNM 8, as long as you obtain this directly from Microsoft. As with any software update, users should confirm that their invitations are directly from Microsoft. Please be careful and ensure you are downloading from Microsoft's site, rather than the spoofed URL used by this virus. "Think before you click." Always be careful with URLs in email messages, as they can be just as dangerous as email attachments.