Techmeme: First Known Ransomware For Mac

Mac Ransomware KeRanger: KeRanger appeared in 2016 and is believed to be the first piece of ransomware to successfully infect Mac computers running OS X. (In 2014, a type of ransomware called. Apple Inc customers were targeted by hackers over the weekend in the first campaign against Macintosh computers using a pernicious type of software known as ransomware, researchers with Palo Alto Networks Inc told Reuters on Sunday.Ransomware, one of the fastest-growing types of cyber threats, encrypts data on infected machines, then typically asks users to pay ransoms in hard-to-trace digital. 3 Min Read (Reuters) - The first known ransomware attack on Apple Inc's AAPL.O Mac computers, which was discovered over the weekend, was downloaded more than 6,000 times before the threat was.

The scourge of ransomware has finally come to OS X! Researchers at the security firm Palo Alto Networks have announced that version 2.90 of the Transmission bittorrent client for Mac OS X has been adulterated with a new ransomware variant they have named KeRanger. Users on the Transmission forum and a message on the front page of the Transmission website confirm this:

  • Apple Mac users targeted in first known ransomware campaign. By Staff Writers on Mar 7, 2016 6:40AM. Software from legitimate developer infected. Apple customers were targeted by hackers over the.
  • For a long time ransomware was a problem that Mac owners didn't have to worry about, but March 2016 saw the appearance of the first ever piece of Mac ransomware KeRanger, distributed along with a.

According to Palo Alto Networks, the malicious installer was generated on March 4, and once installed, will wait 3 days after infection before encrypting the victim's files. This means that the first victims won't notice they are affected until at least March 7. Once activated, the ransomware connects to a Command & Control server over the TOR network and will then begin to encrypt certain types of files. It will then demand a ransom of 1 bitcoin, or about $400 USD, to receive a decryptor.

Very little information is available at this point regarding how the Transmission installer was compromised. It is known, however, that the ransomware is signed with a valid Mac developer's certificate, which is now revoked by Apple. This certificate has a listed owner of POLISAN BOYA SANAYI VE TICARET ANONIM SIRKETI (Z7276PX673), which is not the certificate for the legitimate Transmission developer.

Apple has already released a signature update for their XProtect antimalware software, and due to the revokation of the abused certificate, OS X will refuse to execute malicious installers signed by it.

Techmeme: First Known Ransomware For Mac

Palo Alto Networks has also posted instructions for users who believe they might be infected, towards the bottom of their announcement article. The developers of Transmission recommend that users install version 2.91, which will attempt to detect and remove the infection.

Unfortunately, at the time of this writing there are no antimalware scanners that are currently detecting either of the affected installers:

  • VirusTotal results for malicious installer #1

As this ransomware is further analyzed, we will be sure to post about it here.

Techmeme: First Known Ransomware For Mac Osx

Related Articles:

Apple users have been targeted in a confirmed ransomware attack.

Apple customers were targeted by hackers over the weekend in the first campaign against Macintosh computers using a pernicious type of software known as ransomware, researchers with Palo Alto Networks Inc told Reuters on Sunday.

Ransomware, one of the fastest-growing types of cyber threats, encrypts data on infected machines, then typically asks users to pay ransoms in hard-to-trace digital currencies to get an electronic key so they can retrieve their data.

Security experts estimate that ransoms total hundreds of millions of dollars a year from such cyber criminals, who typically target users of Microsoft Corp’s Windows operating system.

Palo Alto Threat Intelligence Director Ryan Olson said the “KeRanger” malware, which appeared on Friday, was the first functioning ransomware attacking Apple’s Mac computers.

“This is the first one in the wild that is definitely functional, encrypts your files and seeks a ransom,” Olson said in a telephone interview.

Hackers infected Macs through a tainted copy of a popular program known as Transmission, which is used to transfer data through the BitTorrent peer-to-peer file sharing network, Palo Alto said on a blog posted on Sunday afternoon.

When users downloaded version 2.90 of Transmission, which was released on Friday, their Macs were infected with the ransomware, the blog said.

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Techmeme: First Known Ransomware For Mac

An Apple representative said the company had taken steps over the weekend to prevent further infections by revoking a digital certificate that enabled the rogue software to install on Macs. The representative declined to provide other details.

Techmeme: First Known Ransomware For Mac Computers

Techmeme: First Known Ransomware For Mac

Transmission responded by removing the malicious version of its software from its website, http://www.transmissionbt.com. On Sunday it released a version that its website said automatically removes the ransomware from infected Macs.

The website advised Transmission users to immediately install the new update, version 2.92, if they suspected they might be infected.

Techmeme: first known ransomware for mac osxTechmeme: first known ransomware for mac computers

Palo Alto said on its blog that KeRanger is programmed to stay quiet for three days after infecting a computer, then connect to the attacker’s server and start encrypting files so they cannot be accessed.

After encryption is completed, KeRanger demands a ransom of 1 bitcoin, or about $400, the blog said.

Techmeme: First Known Ransomware For Mac Os

Olson, the Palo Alto threat intelligence director, said that the victims whose machines were compromised but not cleaned up could start losing access to data on Monday, which is three days after the virus was loaded onto Transmission’s site.

Techmeme: First Known Ransomware For Mac Download

Representatives with Transmission could not be reached for comment.