Feeds

'Mac worm' hacker in death threat farce

Much ado about malware

Using blade systems to cut costs and sharpen efficiencies

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? ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Secure microkernel that uses maths to be 'bug free' goes open source
Hacker-repelling, drone-protecting code will soon be yours to tweak as you see fit
How long is too long to wait for a security fix?
Synology finally patches OpenSSL bugs in Trevor's NAS
Roll out the welcome mat to hackers and crackers
Security chap pens guide to bug bounty programs that won't fail like Yahoo!'s
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
Researcher sat on critical IE bugs for THREE YEARS
VUPEN waited for Pwn2Own cash while IE's sandbox leaked
Four fake Google haxbots hit YOUR WEBSITE every day
Goog the perfect ruse to slip into SEO orfice
Putin: Crack Tor for me and I'll make you a MILLIONAIRE
Russian Interior Ministry offers big pile o' roubles for busting pro-privacy browser
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
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.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.