Apple devices are growing in popularity year on year with millions of us now selecting Macs, iPhones and iPads as our first choice business technology.
One of the big selling points of the Apple devices, particularly the iMacs and Macbooks, it their security. Anti-virus software is built in meaning that attacks on your devices are rare and much less likely than on another device.
This week, however, Apple users were reminded that non-one is safe from hackers, whatever device you are using.
The nature of the attack
Hackers infected the mac computers with malicious software through a tainted copy of a popular program known as Transmission. Security researchers said on their blog that KeRanger is programmed to stay quiet for three days after infecting a computer. It then connects to the attacker’s server, starts encrypting files so they can’t be accessed and demands a ransom of 1 bitcoin, or about $400, to unlock the computer.
Even Apple are vulnerable to hackers
Although attacks like this are not uncommon, we’ve written blogs about high profile ransomware attacks in the past, they are most likely to happen on a Windows Operating System. This is the first reported case of such an attack happening on an Apple device and will undoubtedly not be the last.
Apple have released a statement assuring users that they have taken steps over the weekend to prevent further infections by revoking a digital certificate that enabled the rogue software to install on Macs. And whilst this might solve this particular problem, Apple users should keep in mind that it might happen again. Although Apple security and anti-virus protection is great, it is not 100% un-hackable.