250,000 new recorded Malware instances affecting Mac Users – What can you do to help protect your data?

15th March 2018
Office with people working on laptops, computers and tablets
EvilOSX cmd window
EvilOSX ‘RAT’ Malware operating in a Command Prompt

Security alerts all around as hackers are beginning to target Mac users like never before. With nearly 250,000 new Malware instances discovered targeting macOS software in the last 3 months.
Intego, the only company focusing solely on security for Macs and other Apple products, has brought to light three new and distinct families of ‘RAT’ malware designed to target and infect Mac users; CrossRAT, EvilOSX and OSX/Coldroot.
The need for security and caution when venturing online has never been greater, let’s have a look at exactly what kind of malware a ‘RAT’ is and what precautions users can take to protect themselves against these disguised online threats.

What is a RAT?

RAT stands for “remote administration tool” or “remote access Trojan.” There are plenty of perfectly legitimate software utilities for accessing another computer, the term RAT is reserved for software that’s designed to be installed and used without the user’s knowledge, often with the intention of spying and/or stealing resources.
RATs commonly include features that allow a remote attacker to control or spy on your computer. They often allow attackers to do such things as observe your screen, take screenshots, activate your camera or microphone, log everything you type including passwords, copy files to or from your computer, or execute other commands, all in the background without your knowledge.

What can I do?

The installation of Malware is almost always ‘user-driven’ attacking you via phishing e-mails and unknown online download options. In the vast majority of cases, Malware attacks are caused by users unwittingly installing it as the Malware masquerades as something else.
They are often hidden in: E-mail attachments, unknown software downloads and potentially can be included in any other forms of correspondence from the online world and your computer.
Below are 7 simple steps users can take, which will keep your Mac safe from almost all forms of phishing-based Malware attacks.

  1. Only download software from its official source
  2. Only open E-mail attachments from trusted/known sources
  3. Make sure the official source of your software has a good reputation
  4. Keep your operating systems and applications up to date
  5. Stay safe when connected to any new or unknown Wi-Fi networks
  6. Have a solid backup strategy to keep your data safe
  7. Make sure your firewall is always up to date and turned on

Keeping safe online is imperative and the first port of call is always to ensure whenever you or another user open or download software/attachments you know that they are from a ‘trusted source’.
There are also plenty of Anti-virus packages available for Mac users. Keeping your equipment up to date with the latest anti-virus software is another way to fight malware attacks ensuring another level of protection, should you ever unwittingly download Malware.
Remember, with HardSoft leasing, your hardware is backed up by both our warranty and technical support. If your business suffers from a malware attack our trained team of engineers will be available to help get you back up and running as soon as possible.
If you’re having issues with malware on your Mac get in touch with our team on 020 7111 1643, or in Ireland call 01 4853026, for assistance.