Skip to comments.Half a million Mac computers 'infected with malware'
Posted on 04/05/2012 8:45:23 AM PDT by null and void
An investigation by Dr Web suggests that about 600,000 Macs have the malware - potentially allowing them to be hijacked and used as a "botnet".
It says that more than half that number are in the US.
Flashback was first detected last September when anti-virus researchers flagged software masquerading itself as a Flash Player update. Once downloaded it deactivated some of the computer's security software.
"By introducing the code criminals are potentially able to control the machine," the firm's chief executive Boris Sharov told the BBC.
"We stress the word potential as we have never seen any malicious activity since we hijacked the botnet to take it out of criminals' hands. However, we know people create viruses to get money.
"The largest amounts of bots - based on the IP addresses we identified - are in the US, Canada, UK and Australia, so it appears to have targeted English-speaking people."
Dr Web also notes that 274 of the infected computers it detected appeared to be located in Cupertino, California - home to Apple's headquarters.
Apple released its own "security update" on Wednesday - more than eight weeks later. It can be triggered by clicking on the software update icon in the computer's system preferences panel.
The security firm F-Secure has also posted detailed instructions about how to confirm if a machine is infected and how to remove the Trojan.
Although Apple's system software limits the actions its computers can take without requesting their users' permission, some security analysts suggest this latest incident highlights the fact that the machines are not invulnerable.
"People used to say that Apple computers, unlike Windows PCs, can't ever be infected - but it's a myth," said Timur Tsoriev, an analyst at Kaspersky Lab.
Apple could not provide a statement at this time.
(Excerpt) Read more at bbc.co.uk ...
Better warm up the popcorn popper. This ought to be interesting.
Now I seem to recall at least a half dozen people telling me that Macs are superior to PCs in part because Macs don’t get viruses. Then I would tell them that it only appears so because most computers are PCs and hence most, but not all, malware is targeted at PCs.
Downloading security update now.
How can you tell? I am a MAC user and keep my software updates checked daily..what was your experience?
MACS were safer because Windows dominated and relatively few miscreants in Pakistan or the Ukraine wasted their time writing malware for them.
Recent technological developments have changed this.
Hi CG, long time no see.
No overt symptoms, did recently download Flash player updates, and machine hasn’t quite felt right lately.
Just installed the latest Apple updates, seems a bit better...
bump - thanks.
How is that possible? MACs aren’t like Windows machines in that if you’re not careful, you’re logging in under the admin account.
Last time I messed with a MAC, I seem to remember that you get a pop up asking you to put in the admin password if you’re doing any task that require rights. Now if you got the dialog box and entered the admin password during normal operations, you blew it. No amount of security in the world will help any user who blindingly inputs their admin pw.
Laughing my tookis off at the fools.....
Yeah people get that popup and provide their password without bothering to find out what they’re allowing. The biggest security hole is always the people, that’s why trojans are the most successful form of malware, the hole a virus uses will eventually get patched, there is no patch for the click happy human hole.
Looks like it finally caught up to the Macs...as I knew it would.
MACs aren’t like Windows machines in that if you’re not careful, you’re logging in under the admin account.How does that work? I have absolutely never accidentally logged in as admin under Windows.
Yep. Even the best of us will occasionally get stupid.
After I ran :
defaults read ~/.MacOSX/environment DYLD_INSERT_LIBRARIES
That normal ?
On some level they still probably agreed to something. Most of the malware in the PC world comes with browser toolbars.