Recent Crypto Trojans Leave Mac Users on High Alert
It seems that Mac users are no longer immune to malware and viruses, as the latest string of crypto trojan attacks has proven that hackers can gain access and take control of Apple computers, The South African reported on February 18, 2019.
Cointicker App Installs Backdoors Threatening Mac Security
CoinTicker, a Mac app that displays the current price of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies on a computer’s main menu bar, has been found to contain two separate pieces of malware. The discovery makes it one of the biggest security threats of the year.
Discovered back in October 2018 by a member of the Malwarebytes community, the bug has been identified as a trojan. According to The South African, when downloaded, the app added a widget to the menu bar that shows cryptocurrency price movements as well as when they happen.
However, in the background, the app also downloads and installs two different backdoors – EggShell and EvilOSX. The analysis of the malware didn’t reveal its ultimate purpose, but Malwarebytes said that it was just a matter of time before they were exploited for “a variety of purposes.”
“Since the malware is distributed through a cryptocurrency app, however, it seems likely that the malware is meant to gain access to users’ cryptocurrency wallets for the purpose of stealing coins,” the company said in its blog post.
Apple Is far from Invincible
And while the purpose of the backdoors is still unknown, Mac users were left with an even bigger question: From where did the malware originate?
According to Malwarebytes, all evidence points to the fact that Cointicker was never legitimate, to begin with. The group found that the app was distributed through a domain that doesn’t exactly match the name of the app and that it was created just a few months before the backdoors were discovered.
Back in August 2018, another malware scare hit the headlines. Lazarus, the notorious North Korean group of hackers, has reportedly been targeting Mac computers to steal cryptocurrency.
The increase in the amount of malware found in Mac apps has proved that, contrary to popular belief, Apple computers are not immune to malware and viruses. The number of affected computers and users might be a lot smaller than that of other operating systems, but it still shows that no user is safe from hacks.
Malwarebytes and other security groups have been urging people, especially Mac users, to remain vigilant and ensure their computers are adequately protected. This has been highlighted numerous times to cryptocurrency traders and investors, as they’re more likely to be victims of a hack.