It used to be that Mac users did not have to worry about contracting malware or viruses but that is no more. According to an investigation by Russian anti-virus firm Doctor Web, there are about 600,000 Macs are infected with the with the Flashback Trojan, potentially allowing them to be hijacked and used as a “botnet”.
About 56.6 percent of the infected computers, or 303,449, are located in the U.S., while 19.8 percent are in Canada, 12.8 percent are in the U.K., and 6.1 percent are in Australia, Doctor Web said.
The Flashback Trojan was initially found in September 2011 masquerading as a fake Adobe Flash Player plug-in installer. After installing Flashback, the malware seeks out user names and passwords that are stored on your Mac. Now, it has evolved to exploiting Java vulnerabilities to target Mac systems. The newest version of the malware, which surfaced over the weekend, appears to be taking advantage of Java vulnerability for which Apple released a patch Tuesday.
Dr Web also reported that 274 of the infected computers it detected appeared to be located in Cupertino, California – home to Apple’s headquarters.
Ultimately, this is another sign that Apple users are not immune from threats of malware even as Apple touts its systems as safer for consumers.