Attack of the Mac viruses!

5 August 2015

sad-apple-logo People who buy Macs have been pretty free of the skirmishes that hit PC users, especially concerning viruses. Well, there's two new serious bits of malware that have hit Macland in quick succession.

One of these bugs lets a program gain access to your Mac, which runs as though it is the admin of the computer. That means it can sidestep a lot of Apple’s security features. Apple still haven't fixed the flaw, which has annoyed people like Stefan Esser, the German coder who found the exploit.

Esser writes: "At the moment it is unclear if Apple knows about this security problem or not, because while it is already fixed in the first betas of OS X 10.11, it is left unpatched in the current release of OS X 10.10.4 or in the current beta of OS X 10.10.5."

There's a new nasty thing in town too, according to researchers from Malwarebytes. They've found a new adware installer, which can embed itself into the operating system, and, worryingly, allows adware to install itself without needing your password.

There's more. Researchers have found a bunch of weaknesses in Apple's firmware (that's the stuff that runs fans, USB ports, power supply and the like) which allowed them to run their own code in it. Apple have been told, and Apple haven't done anything about it. In addition to that, the researchers managed to write a proof of concept attack, which creates a worm virus. That's the kind of virus that can spread from Mac to Mac.

Concerning the latter, a nasty sort can infect an email on someone's MacBook, which will automatically try to infect any hardware connected to it. If you plug your device into something else, then the worm spreads.

Stay vigilant. Or ignorant. We're not your real dad.

TOPICS:   Technology

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