It is widely known among Mac OS X users that they have a very tiny window of being infected with malware due to the nature of the operating system and how it is developed. As Apple reduces and makes Macs less expensive, it attracts a certain group that has a sole purpose to infect computers and use them for their own nasty deeds. To date, most of the exploits have been what most call “kiddie play.” Well kiddie play no longer, it seems that now attacks are becoming more complex and destructive.
The security firm Sophos has uncovered and brought to us a recent development that blows the security of Macs wide open: a trojan called OSX/MusMinim-A. The underground hacking community is taking notice of this exploit and taking it over. What this trojan exploits is the remote access of the system, fooling the user into entering their administrator password allowing the hacker to gain control of the computer.
As Sophos explains, this trojan is in its very infantile stages, but lately development around it has exploded. The development of this trojan can be implemented in many ways and poses a big threat to all applications. With that, another widely seen example is the RSPlug.A; this trojan has been in the wild for quite some time, and it disguises itself to be a plugin required to view a video file but modifies the DNS settings, redirecting users to malicious Web sites.
Sophos did extensive testing with the new trojan and says that even with the announcement of Snow Leopard, that has malware protection built-in, it is not safe. The tests only show that Snow Leopard’s protection is against Safari threats. When the RSPlug.A malware was placed on a simple USB key, it was not blocked from running.
The only solid way to protect your Mac is stop downloading what you shouldn’t be downloading and just use Apple’s App Store. Just like on the iPhone, all applications are checked and made sure to be virus free.