Hacked Macs Create The First Mac Based Botnet…. Or Is That An iBotnet?

ZDNet has a story about a discovery by Symantec of an all-Mac based botnet that is actively involved in a DOS attack:

Writing in the current issue of Virus Bulletin (subscription required), researchers Mario Ballano Barcena and Alfredo Pesoli found two malware variants – OSX.Iservice and OSX.Iservice.B – using different techniques to obtain the user’s password and take control of the infected Mac machine.

The variants have been found inside bogus copies of iWork ’09 and Adobe Photoshop CS4 which were shared on the popular p2p torrent network. The author of the malware downloaded the original/trial versions of each program and introduced a copy of the malicious binary into the packages.  Users who then downloaded and installed the applications from the torrent download would have been infected. It is estimated that thousands of people have downloaded the infected torrent files.

While this proves that Macs are not immune to being hacked, there are some things to consider. This requires user intervention in the form of installing pirated software, rather than it sneaking on to the Mac which tends to happen with Windows machines. This is a great time to mention that downloading pirated software is a dumb thing to do on ANY platform. But I digress. The hackers can’t take control of the computer the virus is running on, rather it attacks other computers. So while this is a threat, it’s not as bad as some of the stuff that you see on the Windows platform.

At least not yet.

One Response to “Hacked Macs Create The First Mac Based Botnet…. Or Is That An iBotnet?”

  1. While proprietary Linux software does exist, I feel that it is the safest platform when it comes to pirated software, because everything you need is free.

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