The Michelangelo computer virus has found its way to Capitol Hill.
"It's like Grand Central Station here," said Hamish Murray, director of the House Information Systems which was busy Tuesday distributing anti-virus disks to House offices.Agriculture Department officials also reported finding the virus in their computer system.
Some estimate the Michelangelo virus has infected as many as 5 million IBM-compatible personal computers worldwide and will activate when they are "booted up" - turned on - Friday, the Renaissance artist's birthday. If that happens, vital areas of a computer's hard drive would be written over, wiping out existing programs and data.
The Senate Computer Center has issued bulletins to all offices on how to purge the virus, and warning them to make back-up copies of their data. "The Michelangelo virus has been found in more than one Senate office," it said.
Murray said he was aware of only one confirmed case in the House, but his experts have detected a half dozen other viruses during their effort to eradicate Michelangelo.