Feeds

Apple admits scareware problem, at last

Says up to 125,000 customers contacted it with 'malware-like' problems

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

Apple has finally held its hands up and admitted that the MacDefender scareware package might be a problem, abandoning the line that support workers must on no account suggest to users that their machine might be infected with malware.

Contrary to this (unsustainable) line, Apple has now published an advisory explaining how to avoid or remove the threat. Apple is promising to remove the threat with a forthcoming update. In the meantime, the fruity one has supplied detailed removal instructions.

Fake anti-virus (scareware) packages falsely warn users that their machines are drilled with malicious software in a bid to con users into buying software of little or no utility. The approach relies on scaring people into buying useless products, not on underlying software vulnerabilities, and therefore works as easily on Mac fans as Windows users.

Apple's support centres sources told ZDnet that anywhere between 60,000 and 125,000 customers had contacted the facility with malware-like problems. That figure sounds high but, since staff were actively discouraged from helping customers to diagnose the problem, we'll never know how accurate the figure might be. If nothing else the incident illustrates that although the vast majority of malware strains affect Windows, other platforms are not immune to malicious software. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

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
Do YOU work at Microsoft? Um. Are you SURE about that?
Nokia and marketing types first to get the bullet, says report
Microsoft takes on Chromebook with low-cost Windows laptops
Redmond's chief salesman: We're taking 'hard' decisions
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS
Google is only now fixing ancient, energy-sapping bug
Big Blue Apple: IBM to sell iPads, iPhones to enterprises
iOS/2 gear loaded with apps for big biz ... uh oh BlackBerry
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
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.
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.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.