My original news story here at DaniWeb has certainly caused something of a media frenzy. Everyone from specialist GPS and gadget websites through to national newspapers have been covering how TomTom let an unspecified number of its GO 910 satnav devices escape from the factory with not one but two nasty surprises in the form of a virus infection.

Actually, it has now come to my attention courtesy of Martin Campbell, who first contacted TomTom on December 16th about the virus infection on his unit, that there are not two but three infected files on the device. The third being autorun.inf which adds entries for copy.exe to the Windows Registry in
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\MountPoints2].

This means that even if your AV software has both detected and removed the infected copy.exe and host.exe files, as Martin discovered, the TomTom drive cannot be double clicked in Windows Explorer because it will try and autorun the virus and, of course, fail with an error message. Martin resorted to manually deleting the Registry entries, which is not quite as simple a fix as TomTom are suggesting.

But the icing on the cake of this particular story is yet another nail in the coffin of TomTom customer service. Forced by 'we the media' into admitting the problem existed and posting a somewhat dismissive statement to that effect on its website you would have thought that TomTom would be making every effort into correcting this PR and customer service blunder. But no, apparently not.

Yesterday, as a registered TomTom customer myself, a copy of the latest TomTom user newsletter dropped into my email in-tray. How would they play the virus issue? A big headline taking the lead so that every customer potentially impacted by it would see? No, not the TomTom style, we have already discovered that. OK then, a smaller advisory notice further down the newsletter body? Nope, not even that. A footnote perhaps?

Guess what, nada, not a mention, the problem does not exist it would seem. Some people simply never learn, do they?

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About the Author

A freelance technology journalist for 30 years, I have been a Contributing Editor at PC Pro (one of the best selling computer magazines in the UK) for most of them. As well as currently contributing to Forbes.com, The Times and Sunday Times via Raconteur Special Reports, SC Magazine UK, Digital Health, IT Pro and Infosecurity Magazine, I am also something of a prolific author. My last book, Being Virtual: Who You Really are Online, which was published in 2008 as part of the Science Museum TechKnow Series by John Wiley & Sons. I am also the only three times winner (2006, 2008, 2010) of the BT Information Security Journalist of the Year title, and was humbled to be presented with the ‘Enigma Award’ for a ‘lifetime contribution to information security journalism’ in 2011 despite my life being far from over...