How to Avoid Ever Getting a Greeting Card Virus Via Email

By: Andrew Van Valer

You have seen them in your email box and read about them in the media and on such websites as www.snopes.com. The fact is these greeting card viruses are real and the perpetrators are even using the good name such as companies like Hallmark to get your attention. You don't want to be the one to open up the next one and lose important files or data or be the one to send it on to friends.

How do you avoid it? Well it would seem simple at first glance, but maybe we need to take a second look. The good news is that we have a solution, so stay with us!

Imagine it's your birthday and you open your email to find that you have gotten three emails announcing the arrival of an e-card from a friend. Ahhh, you are loved. Hold on a second there quick click McKrick before you pop that open thing open you might want to think about that odds are with the large volume of these viruses spreading, that you might be looking at a trap. One with you will be very unhappy to encounter.

Hey, we all like a cute little animated e-card that sings to us, has happy moving pictures and a sentimental note, but is it worth the risk to open them and is that the best we can do to celebrate the important day of someone we love?

Studies show that people are more apt to remember when someone took the time to send a physical card that comes out of your mailbox. Why? Well, it seems that people like to know that you invested something into sending that card which shows them that you care about them. They know that you purchase a card, a stamp and took the time to think about the message. The other reason appears to be that people like the idea that something else comes in their mailbox other than bills and credit card offers. Think about your own behavior, you go to your mailbox and take a quick ancillary glance at the contents of the stack. You sift out the personal letters first, and leave the rest to deal with later. People like physical cards. People are becoming afraid of e-cards. I don't open them anymore, which is a shame because I will never know which ones are legitimate and which people cared enough about me to send me one.

I have recently found the convenience of email and the personalization and safety of a more personalized greeting method. This is working great for me, and I don't worry that at the next friendly get together that someone is going to walk up and thank me for cleaning their hard drive of its contents! There is a great company called Send Out Cards currently being represented here in the Unites States by a firm called Zyzyrgy that has revolutionized greetings by allowing you to send a greeting card in your own handwriting and signature from your desktop with a couple of clicks. These guys have over 12,000 greeting card designs and allow me to keep my address and contact list online so I don't have to do that mad scramble to find a mailing address. No standing in line at the card store or drug store, or buying stamps at the post office. In these days of nearly $5.00 gas here in California; one less trip anywhere is greatly appreciated! I went to the Send Out Cards Zyzyrgy website and I got Cody to help walk me through the simple process and got my first card for free (thanks guys - mom thought I finally got my act together when she got a mother's day card!) I grabbed a designed, typed my note - which is key, because if you see my handwriting it looks like someone is sitting on my hands while I am doing it - and then I chose mom's address and pressed send. These guys at Zyzyyrgy and Send Out Cards did the rest - they printed the cards, put my note inside along with my signature, stamped it and sent it. I felt like a bachelor all over again! It was like a quick service restaurant - good food quickly - fast card quickly. Not pots to clean, no stamps to lick. Well, after I sent my first card, I thought, hey I like this but cards are expensive, so I will save this for special occasions. I found out that these cards are less than $1.00 compared to those that are reaching $5.00 in the retail stores and they don't mark-up the postage so there is no benefit in me wasting time sending it. All I know is that mom was happy. I found myself sending cards to people I met through PTA, scouting and kids sports to congratulate them on their life's successes. People would come up and thank me for thinking of them. They almost thought I was human or something. My wife even gets a card once a month, and she was the biggest skeptic of my humanity so seems like it was a buck well spent!

Well I know I can't prevent viruses from every reaching my computer, but I know my vigilance has paid off in data preservation and a new way to do something I just didn't do very well in the past and that is to very easily and cheaply just send someone an unexpected, heartfelt card. Maybe if I am lucky there will be a dirty dish virus to point me to another awesome solution - bring on the crusty pot worm!

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