Mac Monday – Bogus MacDefender malware campaign targets Mac users using Google Images

PLEASE NOTE: This is only for Mac users who use MacDefender software or who are looking to download this from the internet. This is an internet attack and NOT an attack on the OS for Mac.

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Apple computer owners are being subjected to a number of specialised malware attacks that insists Mac users download a malware version of the popular MacDefender antivirus application, infecting their computers as a result.

News of the malware campaign surfaced as scores of Mac computer owners flooded the Apple Discussion Forums, asking members for advice on how to delete the MacDefender application from their systems.

One member writes:

Hi I am new to this, but something called Mac Defender has downloaded itself and now I cannot get it off my computer. Can someone shed some light on this bizarre program that I did not ask for?

Early reports show that users have been targeted as they search Google Images, one user stating that the bogus MacDefender application was automatically downloaded as he browsed images of Piranhas. Further searching through the Apple Discussion boards suggests that the malware campaign is targeting users of Apple’s Safari browser, displaying warnings that the user’s computer has been infected with viruses that only the unofficial MacDefender application can remove.

Safari users can set their browser to automatically open software they trust, it is thought that many have been infected without their knowledge by this route of attack. Upon downloading, the app asks users to pay for protection, possibly giving attackers credit card details as a result.

To reassure users of the official MacDefender software, it’s creator has taken to theofficial website to warn users of the malware campaign:

IMPORTANT NOTE: As it seams someone wrote a virus/malware application named mac defender (MacDefender.app) for OS X. If you see an application named like this DO NOT DOWNLOAD/INSTALL it. I would never release an application named like this.

It is not thought that the malware application is able to infect Mac computers with a virus, instead it is posing as scareware, which preys on disrupting the confidence of Mac users but also getting them to hand over their credit card details.

Luckily, disabling and removing the bogus MacDefender application is easy. If you have been infected and want to make sure it no longer resides on your system, follow the steps below:

  1. To ensure you do not automatically download the app, uncheck the following: Safari > Preferences > General > uncheck “Open “safe” files after downloading”.
  2. Searching for the application and deleting it directly may fail, saying the app is in use. To stop it running, check Activity Monitor (in Applications > Utilities) and disable anything that relates to MacDefender.
  3. Look in /Library/StartupItems and, same place, LaunchAgents and LaunchDaemons for references to the malware app.
  4. Once quit, head to the Applications folder and drag the MacDefender app to the trash, then delete trash.
  5. To ensure all references to the app are cleared, run a search using Spotlight and delete all MacDefender references you find.

The removal of the app is somewhat easier than on Windows, mainly thanks to the security of the Mac OS X operating system. The malware looks to proliferating off the back of attacks on websites that are serving images on Google Images – it is recommended that you browse safely, utilising other image searches for the time being.

CREDITS
(Disclaimer: We do not carry credit for this post nor any of the photographs; we are simply sharing information, you may not otherwise see, in accordance with the copyright laws and under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License of the USA)

Original Post by TNW

Laptop Died – NVIDIA Failure

Alrighty…So amidst of all the chaos in kimtown, I went to turn on my MACBOOK PRO after putting it to sleep the other night, and lo and behold, the light was on but no one was home.

After troubleshooting and trying several different solutions, I found this article about the NVIDIA graphics card. I’m having all the classic symptoms and believe this is what it is.

In July 2008, NVIDIA publicly acknowledged a higher than normal failure rate for some of their graphics processors due to a packaging defect. At that same time, NVIDIA assured Apple that Mac computers with these graphics processors were not affected. However, after an Apple-led investigation, Apple has determined that some MacBook Pro computers with the NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT graphics processor may be affected. If the NVIDIA graphics processor in your MacBook Pro has failed, or fails within four years of the original date of purchase, a repair will be done free of charge, even if your MacBook Pro is out of warranty.

The good news: I don’t think I have lost any data on the laptop, I just can’t SEE anything.
The bad news: I can’t see anything to get anything off of there.

So after the external crash last week and the laptop this week, well all I can say is that I’m glad I’m backed up. The only things I didn’t have time to back up were my recent follow up list for emails/files (although I have a manual back up method) and my calendar.

So this puts me yet again, a couple of days behind…We are also going to be part of the class action lawsuit against NVIDIA. Remember., it’s not IF it happens, it’s WHEN it happens. Be ready.

MAC Monday – Get a Mac -"Broken Promises"

Happy Monday! MAC Monday has been MIA for a while, but here’s some new stuff you might enjoy!

Why not switch to a MAC computer? Mom always said, “Play nice with others.” Your computer should, too. With Mac OS X, you can use Microsoft Office, connect to most printers and cameras, join PC networks, and even run Windows. Quit worrying about purchasing new software when you can run it on your MAC using Windows. A computer so smart it can run TWO different operating systems. Way cool.

FREE Nova Development Parallels Desktop 5.0 for Mac with purchase of Apple Computer after rebate

SAVE $105! 15″ MacBook Pro 2.53GHZ 4GB/250/SD/9400 only $1594 +FREE Parallels, All-In-One Printer w/ purchase after rebate (was $1699)


The new iMac


Hand-Picked

MAC Monday – iPhone OS 3.0

On March 17, Apple presented the blueprint for iPhone OS 3.0, the next version of the world’s most advanced mobile platform. In addition to previewing its innovative features, Apple gave members of the iPhone Developer Program immediate access to the iPhone OS 3.0 software beta and an updated Software Development Kit (SDK) with over 1,000 completely new APIs.

Learn about the new SDK and get a sneak peek at iPhone OS 3.0 software.Watch the presentation

iPhone OS 3.0 preview blueprint image.

Advance preview of 100 new features.

For iPhone owners, it just keeps getting better. When iPhone OS 3.0 arrives this summer, it will introduce over 100 new features, including the ability to:

  • Search your iPhone
  • Cut, copy, and paste
  • Send photos, contacts, audio files, and location via MMS*
  • Read and compose email and text messages in landscape
SDK with a 1,000 new APIs for developers. 

1,000 new APIs for developers.

With the new SDK, members of the iPhone Developer Program can build applications that do even more. Developers will have the tools to enable in-app purchases — like subscriptions, additional game levels, and new content. They can also create apps that connect peer to peer via Bluetooth, communicate with hardware accessories, and use the Apple Push Notification service to provide alerts.

Learn more about the iPhone SDK for iPhone OS 3.0 beta.