First Ever Ransomware to Affect Apple Macs

By   ISBuzz Team
Writer , Information Security Buzz | Mar 08, 2016 09:00 pm PST

The first ransomware of Apple Mac computers has targeted users this weekend. An Apple representative said the company had taken steps over the weekend to prevent attacks by revoking a digital certificate from a legitimate Apple developer that enabled the rogue software to install on Macs. The representative said he could not immediately provide other details.

The malware is programmed to encrypt files on an infected personal computer three days after the original infection, according to Olson.

That means that if Apple’s steps prove ineffective in neutralising malware that has already infected Macs, the earliest victims will have their files encrypted on Monday, three days after the malicious program first appeared on the Transmission website, he said. Security experts from Tripwire and enSilo have the following comments on it.

[su_note note_color=”#ffffcc” text_color=”#00000″]Tim Erlin, Director of Security and Product Management at Tripwire :

“The malware marketplace is ultimately driven by the population of targets, and Windows outpaces Apple by a wide margin in terms of deployed systems. It may have taken a little longer for ransomware to come to the Mac, but that shouldn’t be interpreted in terms of relatively security, but in terms of target density. There are fewer Mac users, especially fewer corporate Mac users, available to pay the ransoms.

Apple is, however, growing faster in the PC market than Windows vendors. Any increase in Apple’s user base makes the systems a more attractive target for cybercriminals.”[/su_note]

[su_note note_color=”#ffffcc” text_color=”#00000″]Security Experts, at enSilo:

For the first time ever, Mac users have been targeted by a fully-functional ransomware attack, dubbed “KeRanger”. Uncovered this weekend, KeRanger is currently completing a programmed three-day wait period following initial installation before encrypting various document and data files and demanding its victims pay a ransom of one bitcoin, or just over $400. Victims are expected to begin losing data access today, March 7, 2016.

A new threat to Apple users, ransomware campaigns are often thought of as old news in the realm of cyber security. Yet, KeRanger’s successful campaign against the Mac operating system—a paradigm for top-notch security— underscores the pressing need for companies and consumers alike to stop underestimating the threat of ransomware and to implement preventative measures in order to protect themselves from increasingly cunning cyber thieves.[/su_note]

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