Since Friday 4th March, Apple Mac users have been targeted in a ‘first of this kind’ Ransomware attack known as “KeRanger”, basically, a virus that encrypts all of your data and then forces you to pay ($400, roughly £282) to unlock it or it deletes the data.
Once your computer is infected it takes 3 days for the pop up (asking for money) to appear.
Ryan Olson, threat intelligence director at Palo Alto Networks told Reuters:
“This is the first one in the wild [a ransomware virus affecting Macs] that is definitely functional, encrypts your files and seeks a ransom,”
“Transmission is one of the most popular Mac applications used to download software, videos, music and other data through the BitTorrent peer-to-peer information sharing network”
Apple have already put in place some steps to prevent the spread of the virus by revoking a digital certificate from a legitimate Apple developer that enabled the rogue software to install on Macs however it must be noted this would not stop the virus completely (yet).
How to avoid?
- It has Infected ‘Transmission’ BitTorrent Client – users are reminded to immediately upgrade to version 2.91 of the software, which was available on its website, or delete the malicious one.
- Never open any email you’re not 100% sure about
- More importantly never open ANY attachment that you’re not 100% sure if legit, we get 3-5 fake emails a day with dodgy attachments.
- Have backups of your data
- Stop using Torrent….?
How to prevent the most damage?
- Have more than 1 backup of all your data
- The damage won’t be obvious straightaway, it takes 3 days for the pop up to appear
- Update software to the latest version
More information can be found on the Palo Alto Networks website (or pretty much every news website)