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New Malware Hijacks Macs; Uses Reddit to Communicate

New Malware Hijacks Macs; Uses Reddit to Communicate

New Malware Hijacks Macs; Uses Reddit to Communicate

A new malware known as Mac.BackDoor.iWorm is targeting Mac OS X computers to steal users’ personal data and hijack them into a criminal botnet, according to virus researchers.

The multi-purpose backdoor has apparently infected about 17,500 Macs worldwide so far. It’s still unknown how it infiltrates users’ machines. The malware disguises itself as the application com.JavaW and sets itself to autostart. After installation, the malware assesses the system to discover what other software is installed on the infected machine and leaks information about it.

If the bot finds no directories that could interfere, it opens a port on an infected computer and looks for a server to connect to. It sends a request to a remote site to acquire a list of malicious control servers, connects to them and awaits further instructions.

The attackers apparently use the search function embedded in social-networking site Reddit to find comments left by their partners in crime in a Minecraft thread. Once connected to the control and command server, criminals can send instructions to send spam emails, mine Bitcoins or overload websites with traffic that eventually crashes them.

Bitdefender users are advised to use a multi-layered anti-malware solution for their Macs. Bitdefender Antivirus for Mac detects and eradicates this threat as Mac.OSX.iWorm.D, Mac.OSX.iWorm.B, Mac.OSX.iWorm.C and Mac.OSX.iWorm.

About the author

Alexandra GHEORGHE

Alexandra started writing about IT at the dawn of the decade - when an iPad was an eye-injury patch, we were minus Google+ and we all had Jobs. She has since wielded her background in PR and marketing communications to translate binary code to colorful stories that have been known to wear out readers' mouse scrolls. Alexandra is also a social media enthusiast who 'likes' only what she likes and LOLs only when she laughs out loud.


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  • Malware, trojans, and more on Mac computers is seemingly on the rise. The scariest part is that those who own Macs think themselves safe simply because they have a Mac and are slow to respond if responding at all to any threats. That is until they are directly affected. Similar attitudes help the spread and effectiveness of malware and threats on Windows computers. People install antivirus and think they are automatically safe until they regretfully find out otherwise.