Mac users used to be the underdogs. They were often teased by PC users for their computer preference, while proudly expressing their loyalty to the Apple brand. Many Mac users are pleased that the products are a lot more mainstream these days. Unfortunately, the rise in popularity of Mac computers comes at a cost – a rising number of security threats.
Over the years, hackers have been reluctant to target Mac users. There simply weren’t enough of them to make it worth the time and effort for criminals to create viruses for people using those machines. As the number of Mac machine on the market has increased, they have become a more lucrative target to hackers.
Mac users need to be more vigilant about security these days. The first step is knowing how hackers are deploying viruses. Here are some of the most common types of malware that affect Mac users.
Microsoft Word Macros
Last year, a Mac virus was. It was embedded in a Microsoft Word document about Donald Trump. The document appeared very academic at first glance, so few people would have expected it to contain malware.
Despite its seemingly innocent content, the Word document had an auto-running macro that would download harmful content to the computer it was running on. Fortunately, security experts said that the malware was not very advanced. The user would need to download the document first. They would also have to have macros enabled.
Future viruses will probably be embedded in Word documents as well. Mac users should be aware of this and disable macros when opening any documents that they have downloaded online. Of course, they should also be very careful about downloading Word documents in the first place. It is never a good idea to download content without verifying the source can be trusted.
OSX/MaMi was the first new Mac. The virus changes the victims DNS settings, so that it can reroute their Internet traffic. It also takes control of the operating system, although most hackers don’t use it for those purposes. It is very similar to a virus that infected PCs back in 2012. However, it has been repurposed to target Mac users.
After taking control of the machine, they will connect to unsecured servers. At that point, they will start stealing sensitive information.
This malware will also give the hackers full control over the operating system. They can take screenshots and download files against the users’ wishes. It can even delete data, which can only be restored if atool is used in time. They may also use this virus to take control of computers to create botnets, but I haven’t heard any reports of that occurring yet.
The hackers will use a variety of social engineering tactics to track users into downloading the malware.
Ransomware has become a growing concern for everybody. Many Mac users thought they were immune, but that is sadly not the case.
KeRanger is the first ransomware software that targets Mac users. It was originally uploaded to a torrent site. It was also cleverly disguised with a Mac app certificate, which has allowed to escape malware detection software.
The current version of this app uses a torrent client that is named Transmission version 2.90. If you are using that version, then you should update it immediately. KeRanger doesn’t appear to work with newer versions of that product.
Keep Up-to-Date with the Most Recent Mac Malware
Mac users can no longer afford to be careless about malware. Hackers are more inclined to target them these days. Keeping up with all of the malware that it is reaching the market is essential.