600,000 Macs Worldwide Reportedly Infected by Flashback Trojan
Ars Technica reports on a Tweet from Russian malware analyst Ivan Sorokin at Dr. Web claiming that the Flashback trojan has now infected over 600,000 Macs worldwide. That number reportedly includes 274 machines "from Cupertino", presumably meaning at Apple's headquarters.
According to Dr. Web, the 57 percent of the infected Macs are located in the US and 20 percent are in Canada. Like older versions of the malware, the latest Flashback variant searches an infected Mac for a number of antivirus applications before generating a list of botnet control servers and beginning the process of checking in with them.
The authors of the Flashback trojan have continued to tweak the software since it first surfaced last September, adjusting its tactics several times to include both social engineering tricks and exploits of vulnerabilities.
The most recently-seen version of Flashback surfaced earlier this week, exploiting a Java vulnerability that was unpatched on OS X. While Oracle had released an update closing the hole on Windows back in February, Apple had yet to issue a fix for Macs, as the company has historically maintained its own Java updates that are deployed some time after Oracle issues its own corresponding updates. But just a day after that report, Apple did update Java to address the vulnerability being exploited by Flashback.
Antivirus firm F-Secure has instructions on how users can determine whether their machines are infected by the Flashback trojan. The instructions do involve running commands in Terminal, and users should thus take care to follow the instructions exactly.
Top Rated Comments
The malware self-installs after you visit a compromised or malicious webpage. Obviously, it would be a good idea to update any Macs in your control.
For those who want to check if mac is infected (from F-Secure instructions):
Run the following command in terminal:
defaults read /Applications/Safari.app/Contents/Info LSEnvironment
defaults read ~/.MacOSX/environment DYLD_INSERT_LIBRARIES
If you get "The domain/default pair ... does not exist" for both - you are clean
Humans can't get malware.
In Windows, you just need to use Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool or a decent anti-virus, which involves 1 or 2 clicks.
Yea, it's gotta be very hard to click things. I mean, typing commands in Terminal must be simpler.
I know that MacRumors is an Apple oriented place, where Apple lovers come to discuss things about Apple's product. But, posts like the one I quoted make it look like a fanboy place, not an Apple technology discussion place.