Newsletters
The Enterprise Security Supersite NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
Home Network Security Viruses & Malware Cybercrime Security Solutions More Topics...
Get Recognized.
Let an ISACA® certification
enhance your career.

Register for an Exam Today
Computing
24/7/365 Network Uptime!
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Java-Based Trojan Infects More Than 550,000 Macs
Java-Based Trojan Infects More Than 550,000 Macs

By Jennifer LeClaire
April 5, 2012 11:19AM

Bookmark and Share
"Inevitably, some cybercriminals will target Mac users because they are a 'soft target' which hasn't protected itself as well as Windows users," said security analyst Graham Cluley. "Run an anti-virus, keep your Mac patched with the latest security updates." A Java-based Trojan has infected more than 550,000 Macs.
 

Related Topics

Mac
Virus
Apple
Java
Trojan
Malware


So you thought Macs couldn't fall prey to hackers? Think again. A Trojan horse is entering through the back door of Apple computers with a nasty payload -- and it hit more than a half-million users before Apple slammed it shut.

The Flashback Trojan infects computers running Mac OS X. The massive botnet is now using upward of 550,000 infected Macs, most of which are reportedly in the United States and Canada, according to Russian anti-virus vendor Dr. Web.

Here's how victims are getting infected: the Trojan is redirecting Mac users to a bogus site from a compromised resource or via a traffic distribution system. Then, Java code is used to load a Java applet that contains the exploit, Dr. Web explained. News reports indicate links to more than 4 million compromised pages were on Google at the end of March.

Target On Your Mac?

We asked Graham Cluley, senior security analyst at Sophos, about his thoughts on the latest attack against the Apple platform.

"Undoubtedly more and more Mac users will be targeted by malware," Cluley said. "Although there is much more malware for Windows than Mac, that's not to say that Mac malware doesn't exist."

Why so much focus on Mac when they have so little market share? Because, Cluley says, Mac market share is growing and, unfortunately, many Mac users have been far too laid-back when it comes to security, incorrectly believing that they're somehow immune to attacks.

"Inevitably, some cybercriminals will target Mac users because they are a 'soft target' which hasn't protected itself as well as Windows users," Cluley said. "Run an anti-virus, keep your Mac patched with the latest security updates. Luckily there are free anti-virus products for Mac home users." Sophos has a free anti-virus product on its Web site.

Apple has issued a patch that fixes the vulnerability for Snow Leopard and Lion users. But Cluley is pondering whether it's really worth it for Mac users to have Java installed on their computer. As he sees it, having Java on a PC or Mac may let consumers run some archaic applications, but it can also dramatically widen the attack surface hackers can exploit.

"My advice is that if you have no real need for Java, remove it," Cluley said. "The latest version of Mac OS X -- known as Lion -- unlike earlier editions, does not include Java by default, meaning users are not at risk unless they have subsequently installed the software."

From Apple to Twitter

In other security news this week, Symantec is exposing abusive tweets. Symantec reports that scammers are taking advantage of tweets in a way that is similar to how they rely on Internet search engines -- they create tweets that include keywords in them.

This is somewhat similar to how they design Web sites in order to gain visibility for their sites. In order for these sites to appear in search results, scammers need to make the effort to boost visibility, which is known as search engine optimization," Joji Hamada of Symantec wrote in the company blog.

"But tweets may require less effort by the scammers to get users to come across them: new tweets should appear at the top in the search results list for the most recent tweets. However, accounts engaging in automation, spam, and other violations of the Twitter Rules may be investigated for abuse."
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:

CraigG:

Posted: 2012-04-05 @ 11:55pm PT
While Java has done pretty well in its niche “device” market, it hasn’t really fared as well on desktop platforms… and for good reason. Anyone (other than a Java programmer) that has been in the IT field for a while will tell you that the JRE is bloatware and should only be installed if your lifestyle/work depends on it. Otherwise it's just another security vulnerability waiting to happen.

It’s just too bad that JavaScript shares the same name with Java, because it doesn’t deserve to be lumped in with that boat anchor.



Neustar, Inc. (NYSE: NSR) is a trusted, neutral provider of real-time information and analysis to the Internet, telecommunications, information services, financial services, retail, media and advertising sectors. Neustar applies its advanced, secure technologies in location, identification, and evaluation to help its customers promote and protect their businesses. More information is available at www.neustar.biz.


 Computing
1.   Can One Size Windows OS Fit All?
2.   Wall Street Journal Hacked Again
3.   Dropbox for Business Boosts Security
4.   New Technology Defeats Privacy Efforts
5.   Design Central to Microsoft Future


advertisement
Backlash Stirs Against H-1B Visas
Debate over foreign workers continues.
Average Rating:
Amazon Intros Zocalo Storage Service
Online storage and sharing for business.
Average Rating:
Design Central to Microsoft Future
New ethos a break from functional past.
Average Rating:


advertisement
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Navigation
Enterprise Security Today
Home/Top News | Network Security | Viruses & Malware | Cybercrime | Security Solutions | Mobile Security | Disaster Recovery | Windows Security
Data Security | EST Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.