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  • Intego Warns of New "Malware for Mac"



    Intego has discovered a new variant of malware for Macs dubbed HellRTS. Should it be installed on machines running Mac OS X, HellRTS opens a backdoor that, in a nutshell, wreaks havoc by allowing remote users to essentially play "Avatar: the home game" with your Mac and take control of infected machines, performing a variety of actions on them.

    Intego, which recognizes the aforementioned security threat as OSX/HellRTS.D, is actually a variant of a six-year old Mac OS X
    malware. A potentially dangerous entity, HellRTS is sophisticated enough to - as Intego warns - set up its own server and configure a server port and password. And it's only downhill from there, as it intelligently "duplicates itself, using the names of different applications, adding the new version to a userís login items, to ensure that it starts up at login."

    Getting installed on a Mac, unfortunately, isn't too terribly difficult for HellRTS, which can find its way in via a Trojan horse or by capitalizing on a known vulnerability via a program accessed through a web browser. Intego says HellRTS can send e-mail with its own mail server, contact a remote server, and provide direct access to an infected Mac. As if that weren't scary enough, the malware variant is also capable of establishing remote screen sharing and powering down or restarting your Mac.

    It should be noted, however, that Intego can't point to the discovery of any such infections in the wild. But it's out there and being distributed on forums prowled by malicious users who all but certainly would love to take HellRTS out for a dastardly spin to see what it can do.

    For more info on HellRTS, check out Intego.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Intego Warns of New "Malware for Mac" started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 55 Comments
    1. Luppin's Avatar
      Luppin -
      Quote Originally Posted by hollow0 View Post
      Ubuntu is based off of linux/Unix...so is Mac OS
      Ubuntu isn't "based" off of Linux/Unix, it's a distribution of Linux (it IS Linux), which is based on Minix, a Unix-like operating system.

      Quote Originally Posted by reznor9 View Post
      Let's not forget that Newer Macintosh operating systems, such as the Mac OS X, is built on the Unix kernel, which is one of the oldest and most secure operating systems available. Much more than a PC running windows.
      Sources.

      And take a gander at this: Mac versus Windows vulnerability stats for 2007 | Zero Day | ZDNet.com
    1. dale2's Avatar
      dale2 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Luppin View Post
      Ubuntu isn't "based" off of Linux/Unix, it's a distribution of Linux (it IS Linux), which is based on Minix, a Unix-like operating system.



      Sources.

      And take a gander at this: Mac versus Windows vulnerability stats for 2007 | Zero Day | ZDNet.com
      theres a difference between vulnerabilities and exploits for those vulnerabilities.

      thats like saying Person A is allergic to water
      but Person B is allergic to windex, alcohol, latex, pine sol, peanuts, and other easily avoidable substances
      so since person A has less vulnerabilities, hes safer.
    1. lolcats1's Avatar
      lolcats1 -
      my apologies to the mods. i didn't mean to turn this into a mac vs. pc argument.

      that being said, i do claim the throne as official rabble rouser of MMI.
    1. Kroo's Avatar
      Kroo -
      Quote Originally Posted by lolcats1 View Post
      Lol. What happened to macs not getting viruses?

      And the best thing? This wont affect PC's.

      WIN
      It's not a virus.

      No you won't be affected by this. You have 200,000 other bugs, viruses and trojans to worry about dude.
    1. lolcats1's Avatar
      lolcats1 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Kroo View Post
      It's not a virus.

      No you won't be affected by this. You have 200,000 other bugs, viruses and trojans to worry about dude.
      this argument already happened. virus is malware.

      either way, i'm currently on a mac,

      soo....
    1. Kroo's Avatar
      Kroo -
      Quote Originally Posted by lolcats1 View Post
      this argument already happened. virus is malware.

      either way, i'm currently on a mac,

      soo....
      A virus runs automated scripts and does things in background (ie; send emails to all contacts in your address book) as opposed to a trojan/malware, which is an exploit that allows your computer to be run remotely from another computer. A third party needs to be at the helm to control the system. Keystroke recorders are the one thing that run on their own. None of these will crash a Unix system, just screw with all your stuff and use your internet as a remote server. A hacker has to be at his computer to run apps or reconfigure the system. That is what makes Unix a safer OS. You can stuff a hacker up by running a program called little snitch which blocks all unauthorised connections or just turn off the modem and only connect to the internet when you need to. A hacker will give up and move on if there is no ongoing connection to your computer. Hackers were mainly pimply faced students with enough knowledge to write these malicious codes for PC, but with newer OS's the coder has to have a high level of knowledge to execute it. With so much app writing and a hunger for software programers these days, all the smart hackers are making money doing better things, like writing anti virus software. Some also drop little viruses from time to time to create a little more business, or expose exploits give them more cred.
      A Unix or Linux OS is not unhackable, but it is a lot safer than Windows NT OS's.
    1. steve-z17's Avatar
      steve-z17 -
      Quote Originally Posted by lolcats1 View Post
      Lol. What happened to macs not getting viruses?

      And the best thing? This wont affect PC's.

      WIN
      Who ever said Macs don't get viruses? They can...but it's extremely rare. No one takes the time to create a virus for Mac because there's such a small percentage of people that actually use them that it would be a waste of time. I hear about viruses for Windows all the time...Macs, hardly ever. I for one am glad that not too many people use Mac, it keeps things like this to a small small number

      Just don't be stupid and you'll have nothing to worry about!
    1. pyromcr's Avatar
      pyromcr -
      scary stuff...
    1. Cer0's Avatar
      Cer0 -
      I got little snitch myself. Well worth buying. Annoy at first but once you got your normal connections cleared to go then nice to have.

      If you are on Comcast internet they now offer Macs Norton's Internet Security Suite for free like they do for PCs.
    1. awesomeSlayer's Avatar
      awesomeSlayer -
      Quote Originally Posted by Success.Is.Sweet View Post
      LOL So true!

      All Mac systems are now getting some scary malware. This is getting to the point where Mac OS X users need anti-malware software. Can these malware creators can just get a life? Who creates them anyway?
    1. iphone8130hak's Avatar
      iphone8130hak -
      look out for that crap
    1. Success.Is.Sweet's Avatar
      Success.Is.Sweet -
      Quote Originally Posted by awesomeiPod View Post
      Who creates them anyway?
      People get paid to make viruses. Quite a lot actually.
    1. iphone8130hak's Avatar
      iphone8130hak -
      anti virus is the sh"t
    1. riku98523's Avatar
      riku98523 -
      Quote Originally Posted by reznor9 View Post
      Let's not forget that Newer Macintosh operating systems, such as the Mac OS X, is built on the Unix kernel, which is one of the oldest and most secure operating systems available. Much more than a PC running windows.

      I love my macs. ^^
      I lol'd at this post Mac isn't built on Unix that's a bold faced lie from Apple they take Unix they break it then they tweak it a bunch to the point of being unrecognizable to a proper Unix based system. If you want the real power of a Unix based system upgrade to Linux (and get used to it) you will never go back.
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      Quote Originally Posted by Poseidon79 View Post
      I wonder if this will prompt Apple to patch the hole... or prompt a bunch of Mac users to go by anti-virus software.
      probably allittle of both. but the real stab here from Intego is. not only are they [in my opinion] the best protection for a Mac that you can buy. but theyll charge you a premium annual fee to continue your ability to get upgrades. [for life]. theyve really got it made. buy our premium software at a premium price and continue to have to pay fees or we'll stop giving you updates. then theyll scare the public with a WHOLE new version of spyware which will prompt more users to enter their cycle. they probably had the malicious code written for all we know. i for one am one of the suckers that bought into this. [HOWEVER] i can tell you for certain i am virus free. it'll even scan your iphone or ipod [probably iPAd as well] and actually, the only virus i have found came from the Cydia store via the security app Metasploit.
    1. Masterz1337's Avatar
      Masterz1337 -
      How would you know if you're infected?
    1. Cer0's Avatar
      Cer0 -
      You buy their software. Some are saying they cooked this up for sales or whatever. Who knows. Not sure if any of the other anti-virus software for mac's have this in their systems.
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      Quote Originally Posted by Masterz1337 View Post
      How would you know if you're infected?
      you scan your computer. if it finds any viruses it will quaratine it and alert you. then you have the choice of eradicating the virus or telling it that the file is safe.



      Quote Originally Posted by cerote View Post
      ......Not sure if any of the other anti-virus software for mac's have this in their systems.
      macscan also had an update for this
    1. Forever Young's Avatar
      Forever Young -
      Quote Originally Posted by rhekt View Post
      probably allittle of both. but the real stab here from Intego is. not only are they [in my opinion] the best protection for a Mac that you can buy. but theyll charge you a premium annual fee to continue your ability to get upgrades. [for life]. theyve really got it made. buy our premium software at a premium price and continue to have to pay fees or we'll stop giving you updates. then theyll scare the public with a WHOLE new version of spyware which will prompt more users to enter their cycle. they probably had the malicious code written for all we know. i for one am one of the suckers that bought into this. [HOWEVER] i can tell you for certain i am virus free. it'll even scan your iphone or ipod [probably iPAd as well] and actually, the only virus i have found came from the Cydia store via the security app Metasploit.
      how do you get it to scan your iphone? I have intego programs but know how to do that
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      just plug your phone into your computer. open your virusbarrier. press select. then harddrives. then select your iphone from the menu.