Feeds

'Mac worm' hacker in death threat farce

Much ado about malware

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

Claims by an anonymous author that he was paid to create a worm targeting Mac OS X systems are turning into a soap opera-style farce. Infosec Sellout said his 'Rape-OSX' worm uses an undisclosed vulnerability in the mDNSResponder component of Mac OS X to spread.

Low-threat malware targeting Mac OS X systems is unusual, but far from unprecedented. Claims that the supposed author of the worm is being paid to create proof-of-concept malware lack credibility or rationale, aside from creating mischief.

The original 15 July post on Infosec Sellout's blog, which has since been stripped of detail, said: "I wrote this for my own purposes and it will be demonstrated to those who asked me to engage in this work. Yes, I am being compensated for this (Hi, Joanna)."

The information security community is a small, almost exclusively male clique. The only Joanna of note is Joanna Rutkowska, founder of Invisible Things Lab, a noted security researcher who developed the Blue Pill rootkit to illustrate the security shortcoming of Windows Vista's anti-malware defences.

Rutkowska told eWeek that she doesn't know Infosec Sellout and certainly hasn't paid anybody to write worms.

Infosec Sellout was "identified" as LMH, someone associated with the Phrack High Council (PHC), on Cutaway Security's blog on 17 July, based on an anonymous chat-room conversation. PHC aims to cause grief to responsible white-hat hackers.

Whether this is true or not remains unclear, but soon after this Infosec Sellout's blog was "hacked", renamed "Security Information", and stripped of almost all its posts. One of the two posts left on the blog provides a link to information on the alleged worm, but none of them detail of the original post.

IDG reports that death threats were posted on the blog prior to the hack, adding further spice to an already heady mix.

Rape-OSX is looking more and more a work of mischief rather than mayhem. Perhaps we should thank Infosec Sellout for enlivening an otherwise dull week in information security with his gonzo-style pranks? ®

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
BMW's ConnectedDrive falls over, bosses blame upgrade snafu
Traffic flows up 20% as motorway middle lanes miraculously unclog
LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs
Blow to bit-spitter 'tis but a flesh wound, claim team
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
Don't look, Snowden: Security biz chases Tails with zero-day flaws alert
Exodus vows not to sell secrets of whistleblower's favorite OS
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.