A new malware called ‘Wirelurker’ is infecting Apple products and apps on an unprecedented scale.
Security experts in Palo Alto have warned that more than 400 applications have been infected and the malware is “the biggest in scale” they have ever seen.
Palo Alto Networks have estimated that several hundred thousand users are already affected by the malware which downloads malicious apps when iOS devices (including iPhones, iPads) are connected to an infected mac via USB. The virus can then download sensitive information, address book details, passwords and more.
According to the security firm, over 460 infected apps have been downloaded 356,000+ times.
Apple released a statement acknowledging the new virus which is currently affecting users in China, but may spread elsewhere
“We are aware of malicious software available from a download site aimed at users in China, and we’ve blocked the identified apps to prevent them from launching. As always, we recommend that users download and install software from trusted sources.”
A patch is currently in the works but it is not clear when it will be available for mac users or how it will ‘disinfect’ apps that have already been hijacked.
As a safety precaution, mac users should download the latest security updates (software update) when they become available.