Security Experts:

Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

SecurityWeekSecurityWeek

Malware & Threats

Apple Pushing Its Own Fix for Flashback Infections

With little fanfare, and no attention brought to the announcement itself, Apple has said it is working on software that will detect and remove the Flashback malware from infected systems. Unfortunately, the company did not say when this software would be released.

With little fanfare, and no attention brought to the announcement itself, Apple has said it is working on software that will detect and remove the Flashback malware from infected systems. Unfortunately, the company did not say when this software would be released.

As things stand, assuming that the current options for detecting and removing the infection are working, it’s safe to say that 400-500,000 of the initial 650,000 systems infected by Flashback are still compromised – and that’s being generous. Reports have the infection count hitting a low of just over 250,000, but those were weekend numbers. Not everyone uses his or her computer 24-7, so the actual count is hard to grasp.

No matter the count, the fact remains that Flashback is something that came out of the blue and left many Mac users exposed. There are options however for addressing the problem. The latest is a tool promised by Apple.

“Apple is developing software that will detect and remove the Flashback malware. In addition to the Java vulnerability, the Flashback malware relies on computer servers hosted by the malware authors to perform many of its critical functions. Apple is working with ISPs worldwide to disable this command and control network,” Apple said in a support note.

Apple did not say when the tool will be released, and the patch for the Java vulnerability itself doesn’t apply to users of OS X 10.5. Also, it’s important to note that patching Java does not help if the system was already infected and it will not prevent Flashback from attacking via other means. In addition to Apple’s tool, Kaspersky Labs has created a web site for Mac users to see if their system is infected. They’ve also released a removal tool.  

Moreover, one of the oldest Macintosh AV vendors, Intego, has said that their software will detect and remove all Flashback variants from an infected system. The problem for some is that Intego’s offering is Trialware, so it’s not really free. 

If that’s the case, Sophos has free AV software for OS X that will also detect and remove Flashback.

Written By

Click to comment

Expert Insights

Related Content

Malware & Threats

Microsoft plans to improve the protection of Office users by blocking XLL add-ins from the internet.

Cybercrime

CISA, NSA, and MS-ISAC issued an alert on the malicious use of RMM software to steal money from bank accounts.

Cybercrime

Chinese threat actor DragonSpark has been using the SparkRAT open source backdoor in attacks targeting East Asian organizations.

Application Security

Electric car maker Tesla is using the annual Pwn2Own hacker contest to incentivize security researchers to showcase complex exploit chains that can lead to...

Malware & Threats

Cybercrime in 2017 was a tumultuous year "full of twists and turns", with new (but old) infection methods, a major return to social engineering,...

Cybercrime

A recently disclosed vBulletin vulnerability, which had a zero-day status for roughly two days last week, was exploited in a hacker attack targeting the...

Malware & Threats

Norway‎-based DNV said a ransomware attack on its ship management software impacted 1,000 vessels.

Malware & Threats

A GitHub Codespaces feature meant to help with code development and collaboration can be abused for malware delivery.