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OS X

Better Mac Testing: Static versus Dynamic Testing

Dynamic or on-access Mac testing of AV products is problematical with samples for which Apple has implemented signature detection.

From flicks to clicks: Mac OS X Trojan Adware.Yontoo infects via fake codec

Protection and remediation tips for Mac OS X users targeted by a Trojan adware plugin called Yontoo hidden behind movie trailer and other media playing links, generating money for criminals exploiting online ad schemes.

Flashback Wrap Up

Six months ago, Flashback was attracting a lot of attention from researchers and media due to its wide spread and interesting features. Since then, we have witnessed its operator abandoning control of the botnet by shutting down its latest command and control server. This happened in May this year. The number of infected systems has

Flashback Wrap Up

Six months ago, Flashback was attracting a lot of attention from researchers and media due to its wide spread and interesting features. Since then, we have witnessed its operator abandoning control of the botnet by shutting down its latest command and control server. This happened in May this year. The number of infected systems has

Mac OSX/iOS hacks at Blackhat – are scammers setting their sights?

For years scammers and hackers  focused largely on Windows x86-based platforms, in many ways because that’s where the bulk of the users were. But times change, and new targets emerge. At Blackhat and Defcon last week we saw a flurry of talks on Mac OSX/iOS security,  trying to illuminate possible chinks in the armor. From

MacDefender (now MacGuard) Can Install Without Credentials

The recent MacDefender Trojan has been receiving “rebranding” facelifts since it came out. It has now been deployed as MacProtector, MacDetector, MacSecurity, Apple Security Center, and there are no doubt more iterations to come. The malware has been updated, and now sports an improved UI that looks like a native Mac OSX application, unlike the

Boonana Threat Analysis

Our interim analysis of a version of the malware we detect as Java/Boonana.A or Win32/Boonana.A (depending on the particular component of this multi-binary attack) differs in some characteristics from other reports we've seen. The most dramatic difference is in the social engineering hook used in messages sent to an infected user's friends list. Other reports

Adobe Updates

Adobe has just released an update for 20 vulnerabilities in Shockwave Player, most of which could allow an attacker to execute malicious code. The bulletin APSB10-20 – Security update available for Shockwave Player – refers. According to Jeremy Kirk's Macworld report and the Adobe advisory, the vulnerabilities affect both Windows and OS X versions up to

Mac to the Future

I like Macs. Not in an "OS X is God's own Operating System" sort of way, but I've owned/used many Macs, from SE/30s and IICX's to iMacs, eMacs and Macbooks. In fact, at least two of my books were written on the Powerbook which was my workhorse machine in my last couple of years at

April is the Cruellest Month*

This time last year I was on my way to Cambridge to deliver a presentation, having stayed up till the early hours of the morning to post a blog reporting that Conficker, although it had changed its behaviour, as we already knew it would, had not initiated the heat death of the Internet.  What's really

Run! It’s the Fuzz!

Unfortunately, I'm not able to attend the CanSecWest 2010 conference in Vancouver this week, though I think Pierre-Marc will be there. I would have been more than a little interested in Charlie Miller's presentation on fuzzing Mac applications: that is, “…a method for discovering faults in software by providing unexpected input and monitoring for exceptions.” 

Valentine Scams: Romancing the Stony-Hearted

As we've seen so many times before, cybercriminals are not ashamed to exploit horrors like the Haiti earthquake or 9/11, so it would be naive to expect them not to make use of our warmer sentiments, too. My colleague Urban Schrott at ESET Ireland has just blogged a cautionary note on that very topic.  I recently blogged

NOD32 Antivirus for Mac: Some Questions

These are a few questions relating to ESET's antivirus scanner for OS X, which is currently in beta, that I was asked in response to a post at Mac Virus. (If you want to take the beta out for a spin, you can still download it at http://beta.eset.com/macosx.) As these questions are very ESET-specific, I

Top Ten Trite Security Predictions

1. Every security blogger in the world will mark the transition from 2009 to 2010 with at least one top ten something-or-other article. Except me, of course.  2. There will be headlines about the death of anti-virus, and a famous security guru will state that anti-malware only catches malware that's already been identified and analysed, that

OS X and Linux beta versions

The first public beta for ESET NOD32 Antivirus for Mac OS X Desktop is now available. "Based on our technology for BSD, Linux, and Solaris servers, ESET NOD32 Antivirus for Mac OS X Desktop has evolved to provide a GUI and feature set similiar to ESET NOD32 Antivirus for Microsoft Windows." http://beta.eset.com/macosx The first public beta

Chrome for the Holidays

I was asked to comment on Google Chrome OS (operating system): specifically, on the security model that is being proposed, and on the privacy issues associated with running an operating system in the cloud. You can find the article by Orestis Bastounis of Computeract!ve here: http://www.computeractive.co.uk/computeractive/news/2254227/google-unveils-chrome It's difficult to speak authoritatively about Chrome OS so

Mac Malware (again)

An interesting comment was made to my last blog on Snow Leopard, Mac malware and all that. I’ve approved the comment, but since people who read the blog earlier won’t necessarily go back to see what comments it’s attracted, I’ll answer it here, at more length. Mac User said that "Currently, the only way to get

Snow Leopard and Malware

Mac User has reported in a little more detail than I’ve seen elsewhere so far on the Trojan detection in Snow Leopard, quoting freelance OS X and iPhone developer Matt Gemmell. In fact, the meat of the story is Gemmell’s tweets, which state that:the system checks for only two known Trojans, RSPlug and iServices, and

Mad Macs: Beyond Blunderdome

I really ought to be working towards some really urgent deadlines, but I can’t resist a quick comment on the antimalware detection feature in Snow Leopard – darn, I’m going to have to upgrade to get a proper look at it – since several AV people, including our own Aryeh Goretsky have commented. I have

Viruses Revealed: The Economics of Authoring

"Viruses Revealed", which I wrote with Robert Slade and Urs Gattiker, isn’t exactly my latest book. In fact, it was published by Osborne in 2001, and has been out of print for several years. Still, I have some fond memories of it: for a start, it was my first book in the security arena as one

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25 Mar 2014
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