Malware Attacks on Macs Up 744% in 2016, Mostly Due to Adware

Discussion in 'Mac Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Apr 6, 2017.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Malware attacks on Macs were up 744 percent in 2016, according to the latest Threat Report shared by McAfee Labs [PDF]. Mac users don't need to be overly alarmed, though, because much of that huge jump can be attributed to adware bundling. macOS malware samples jumped up 245 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016 alone just from adware.

    Adware, while irritating, is less alarming than true malware attacks that can hijack a machine or render it unusable.

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    McAfee says it discovered 460,000 malware samples on Mac machines, a huge increase over 2015 numbers, but still just a small portion of overall malware out in the wild. According to McAfee, there were more than 630 million total instances of malware last year.

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    While most of the surge in Mac malware was adware, we've still heard about some alarming Mac-based attacks over the course of the last year, including ransomware distributed via trusted BitTorrent client Transmission, Backdoor.MAC.Eleanor, Xagent, which could steal passwords and iPhone backups, and more.

    Mac users who want to avoid malware and adware should only download software from trusted developers and directly from the Mac App Store, which should keep Mac machines relatively safe.

    Article Link: Malware Attacks on Macs Up 744% in 2016, Mostly Due to Adware
     
  2. Markoth macrumors 6502

    Markoth

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    Software in general has become more available on the Mac, so I suppose it's about time malware developers caught on. Hurray for progress!
     
  3. BasicGreatGuy Contributor

    BasicGreatGuy

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    From the article: "Mac users who want to avoid malware and adware should only download software from trusted developers and directly from the Mac App Store, which should keep Mac machines relatively safe."

    I completely agree. I also think it is important to use content blockers, as well as being mindful of where you go on the internet.
     
  4. OldSchoolMacGuy Suspended

    OldSchoolMacGuy

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    Settle down. Doesn't take much to have increases like that when you have such low levels to start with.

    If you have 1 case and now you have 100, you've had a 9900% increase. It's still not a lot considering how many Mac users there are, but it makes for great attention grabbing stats to get people to pay attention to your website article or get them to buy your security product.
     
  5. oneMadRssn macrumors 601

    oneMadRssn

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    Yea. I'd like to see those bar graphs on the same scale as used for Windows.
     
  6. willmtaylor macrumors G3

    willmtaylor

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    I'm glad we can trust an unbiased source that doesn't have any skin in he game, like McAfee. :D
     
  7. jblagden macrumors 65816

    jblagden

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  8. 69Mustang macrumors 604

    69Mustang

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    Who should settle down? No one is up in arms. Even the article says no one should be overly alarmed. Also, why would you use made up numbers when the actual numbers are attached. Seems only one overreaction so far.:rolleyes:
     
  9. blacktape242 macrumors 68000

    blacktape242

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  10. JaySoul macrumors 68030

    JaySoul

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    6 months ago, I had my first ever malware incident on my Mac. I even use an anti-virus and don't load random apps.

    It turned out an official app (downloaded from App Store) that must have gone rogue or had a backdoor problem.

    It was definitely a wake-up call.
     
  11. Markoth macrumors 6502

    Markoth

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    What's a shame is that he basically ruined the whole experience of overreacting to this news, by preemptively overreacting. What's the point now?...
     
  12. MH01 Suspended

    MH01

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    If you read beyond the headline, the article clearly explains the situation and that there Is no need to panic, also has supportive data.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 6, 2017 ---
    Click bait headlines .... don't reflect the story ?
     
  13. cerote macrumors 6502a

    cerote

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    No app name to warn others? ;)
     
  14. willmtaylor macrumors G3

    willmtaylor

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    I didn't get the impression he really knew himself. Just a guess.
     
  15. Markoth macrumors 6502

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    I take it you didn't understand that I agreed with the post I quoted.
     
  16. swm macrumors regular

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    umm, i see. an antivirus software developer warns the osx users they're not safe anymore...
     
  17. Michaelgtrusa macrumors 604

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  18. M.PaulCezanne macrumors 6502a

    M.PaulCezanne

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    Related - hopefully the Safari team will focus more on hardening moving forward. It's a pretty good browser now, but Firefox and Chrome have so many more extensions available.
     
  19. IJ Reilly macrumors P6

    IJ Reilly

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    I read beyond the headline. In fact I looked at the linked document from McAfee. Neither explain what "adware" is, how it gets onto a Mac, how to detect if we have it, how we can rid ourselves of it, or why we should not be concerned about it one way or another. Otherwise, a very complete article.

    So if the intended message was that we should not panic, then that message was far from clearly conveyed either by McAfee or MR.
     
  20. pdaholic macrumors 65816

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    I used to be a pro at figuring out how to rid my windows laptop of disabling viruses. I started using a Mac 6 years ago and haven't had to reinstall the os once. One of the many reasons I keep throwing money at Apple.
     
  21. Scottsoapbox macrumors 6502a

    Scottsoapbox

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    But Macs don't get viruses! :rolleyes:
    --- Post Merged, Apr 6, 2017 ---
    I haven't had a virus on a PC in over 10 years.

    The only people that do are doing one of the following: installing things from unknown email attachments, installing 'cracked' software they don't want to pay for, or installing things that promise free porn.
     
  22. star_nerdy macrumors member

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    The problem is that malware works. And you don't even need to create something malicious.

    I worked for Apple support and people would call in frequently with their browser saying call support and they would tell me they had this happen before and it cost them $300 to fix but they couldn't afford that again.

    The issue was adware infected the mac and when they reopened safari they would be redirected to an infected URL. The solution is simple, but safari into safe mode by holding shift as you open safari and then clear history and maybe go over their library files for known malware.

    People throw money at these people because they don't know how to tell the difference between spam and phishing attacks or how to clear cache and history.
     
  23. willmtaylor macrumors G3

    willmtaylor

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    #23
    You think adware = virus? Interesting.

    @GGJstudios , care to chime in here?
     
  24. Scottsoapbox macrumors 6502a

    Scottsoapbox

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    No that's my entire point. Going on and on about being virus free while adware and malware problems "don't count" is downright silly.
     
  25. Shaun, UK Suspended

    Shaun, UK

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    #25
    I've noticed a lot more problems while surfing the net on my iPad Pro.
     

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