Friday, 16 October 2015

Company Claims Nearly 1,000 New Mac Malware In 2015

An American security company claims it has this year found nearly 1,000 instances of malware for Mac OS X, five times as many as in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 combined. However, the report from Bit9 and Carbon Black does not know what malware is involved.

Also not reported how it is contracted, how widespread the malware found and whether for instance, there are trails. As a result, it is unclear how large the actual threat is now. The study (pdf) researchers from Bit9 and Carbon Black gathered for a period of 10 weeks in all sorts of places malware specimens, such as blacklists, Cont Agio malware dump, open source and security incidents. In total more than 1400 unique OS X malware specimens were found. 180 examples date from 2010 to 2014. 948 copies were for the first time this year have appeared.

"The number of copies in this analysis is large enough that even the most optimistic Mac OS X user realizes that security is now of paramount importance," said the researchers. They expect the number of Mac malware attacks will increase in the coming months. How that will take place just is not reported. Recently, anti-virus firm BitDefender said that nearly half of all Mac malware is actually adware.

Mac users run mainly via adware bundled software, for example through pop-ups and ads on websites that say that something is wrong may be using the computer or the performance improved. Bitdefender recommends Mac users also to be selective about which programs they download and install. It is also advised to only download apps from the official Mac App Store. Researchers at Carbon Black advised Mac users to install a virus scanner, with free alternatives to Avast, Malwarebytes, and Sophos highlights. Users who wonder if they are infected may be advised the Dynamic Hijack Scanner or Knock Knock use.

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