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Technology Nearly 30,000 Macs reportedly infected with mysterious malware

19:55  21 february  2021
19:55  21 february  2021 Source:   cnn.com

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Nearly 30,000 Macs world-wide have been infected with mysterious malware, according to researchers at security firm Red Canary.

an open laptop computer sitting on top of a wooden table: CRACOW, POLAND - 2020/12/01: In this photo illustration a 13inch Macbook pro seen displayed on a wooden desk. (Photo Illustration by Vito Corleone/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images) © Vito Corleone/SOPA Images/Getty Images CRACOW, POLAND - 2020/12/01: In this photo illustration a 13inch Macbook pro seen displayed on a wooden desk. (Photo Illustration by Vito Corleone/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The malware, which the company calls Silver Sparrow, does not "exhibit the behaviors that we've come to expect from the usual adware that so often targets macOS systems," Tony Lambert, an intelligence analyst at Red Canary wrote.

It's not clear what the malware's goal is. Silver Sparrow includes a self-destruct mechanism that appears to have not been used, researchers said. It's also unclear what would trigger that function.

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Notably, Silver Sparrow contains code that runs natively on Apple's in-house M1 chip that was released in November, making only the second known malware to do so, according to the news site Ars Technica.

"Though we haven't observed Silver Sparrow delivering additional malicious payloads yet, its forward-looking M1 chip compatibility, global reach, relatively high infection rate, and operational maturity suggest Silver Sparrow is a reasonably serious threat," researchers wrote.

Silver Sparrow infected Macs in 153 countries as of February 17, with higher concentrations reported in the US, UK, Canada, France and Germany, according to data from Malwarebytes, a website that blocks ransomware attacks.

Cybercrime groups are selling their hacking skills. Some countries are buying .
Nation-state hacking groups don't need to do the work themselves anymore: they can hire criminal gangs to breach targets for them - with the added bonus that it's harder to trace the attack back to them, say researchers.Cyber-criminal hacking operations are now so skilled that nation-states are using them to carry out attacks in an attempt to keep their own involvement hidden.

usr: 10
This is interesting!