Apple Takes Aim at Malware Beneath the Radar
Graham Cluley of Sophos
updated his blog Friday with a blunt message for many of the Mac users who still "seem oblivious to security threats which can run on their computers." As a result of this unfortunate reality, Apple has stealthily updated Mac OS X’s anti-malware protection conveniently enough through the just-released Mac OS X 10.6.4.
According to Cluley, Apple specifically took aim at updating the malware protection built into Mac OS X to guard against a "backdoor Trojan horse" that could prove a nightmare iMac or MacBook users by letting hackers "send spam email from your computer, take screenshots of what you are doing, access your files and clipboard and much much more."
Nonetheless, Apple didn't publicly utter a word of this update, most likely as a means to keep hackers in the dark on the update. Well, that plan didn't work out as expected since the update has now come to light. Still, beefed-up security was apparently of great concern for Cupertino as more and more nefarious threats surface for our Macs on a surprisingly routine basis. So, without much fanfare, Apple simply updated XProtect.plist, which, as Culely calls it, is the "rudimentary file that contains elementary signatures of a handful of Mac threats" to pick up on HellRTS. For months now HellRTS has been passed out like cupcakes at a birthday party by hackers looking to do damage with their own disguised version of iPhoto.
It's clear that the latest steps taken by Apple to safeguard Macs and their users represent more of a beginning than an end to a process. While there are certainly more threats to Windows PCs thriving in the world today, hackers have not overlooked Macs - not by a long shot. And for that very reason, we can't afford to overlook them either.
Image via Sophos