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Mac viruses you should know

Apple’s Macs are immensely popular worldwide for being appealing devices that offer users top-tier performance and a feature-packed operating system. Besides this, Macs are also famous for being safer than other devices. Apple takes various measures to protect Macs from vulnerabilities and malware. A prime example is that the company does not allow macOS users to install applications from unreliable sources. Besides this, macOS also features a powerful anti-malware tool called XProtect. According to Apple, XProtect is a powerful native utility of macOS that detects and eliminates viruses. The native utility checks every newly-installed application thoroughly to ensure that it does not contain any suspicious features.

However, even though Apple tries its best to prevent viruses and malware from finding solace in Macs, Mac malware exists. Even though they are rarely found, some Mac viruses can prove to be quite catastrophic for users as they can significantly compromise the security of their data and files. This article will cover some of the most known Mac viruses to ensure that users know about the Mac malware. Let us get started:

  • OperatorMac

Adware.OperatorMac is one of the oldest Mac viruses. It has been a recognized type of malware since 2015. The persistent adware virus slows down browsers and makes them slower and laggy. If your Mac has this virus, it will affect your browser’s speed. Besides this, since it is an adware virus, you may also experience a flood of pop-ups in your browser. Moreover, the malicious file may redirect you to suspicious and malware-filled websites. Hence, if you experience any of the symptoms mentioned above, check your Mac for the virus and get it removed.

  • Bing Redirect Virus

The Bing redirect virus is a common type of malware that redirects your browser’s Google search to Bing. Similar to other viruses, the Bing redirect virus is a gateway for hackers to hijack your system. Once they achieve access to your Mac, they can steal your data, install harmful applications, etc. This virus stays hidden behind different file types such as documents, audio or video clips, apps, etc. Even though the virus is tough to get rid of, there are numerous ways following which you can get rid of it. For instance, you can use your Mac’s Activity Monitor or Finder to eliminate suspicious processes behind which it may be hidden. Besides this, you can also use a malware-cleaning tool to detect and eliminate the Bing redirect virus and other forms of malware. To know more about the virus and how you can get rid of it using native or third-party utilities, visit https://setapp.com/.

  • Silver Sparrow

One of the most recent forms of Mac malware that specifically targets Macs featuring the M1 chip is Silver Sparrow. A security firm named Red Canary brought the presence of the virus to the attention of M1 Mac users. The malicious virus uses JavaScript API to run and execute commands. Even though it sprung up recently, the virus has already affected 30,000+ Macs across 150 countries. No one knows much about malware and what it does. Numerous researchers believe that the now-stagnant virus prepares to pull off a major attack.

  • NewTab

Another form of adware, the Adware.NewTab often poses as a browser extension to hide in plain sight from users. Even though it claims that it is a useful extension designed to track packages in transit and flights, the malicious file pushes adverts and pop-ups that originate from the current website the user is browsing. The continuous appearance of ads significantly slows down the browser and prevents the browser from surfing the Internet smoothly.

  • CookieMiner

Discovered in 2019, the CookieMiner virus can compromise and steal different forms of cyber currencies. It can use virtual wallets to steal a user’s confidential info, such as their passwords, usernames, etc. Besides this, it can also access backups and bypass the highly-secure two-factor authentication that is a standardized way to protect users’ data and access users’ cryptocurrency wallets. One of the best ways to eliminate this highly-dangerous virus is to clear the browser cache frequently, especially post-financial account logins.

  • XcodeSpy

XcodeSpy is a recently-discovered malware that generally locks in on Apple developers. In most cases, the virus spreads through Xcode projects that feature malicious content. It is introduced using a third-party Xcode project and remains undetected most of the time. It affects peripherals and can use your Mac’s components, such as the mic, webcam, and keyboard. Once the virus affects your Mac, the attacker can easily access any data present on the system, including sensitive data such as financial account credentials, location, etc.

These were some of the most common Mac viruses you should know about. To ensure your Mac stays safe and secure, you should invest in good antivirus software and use it frequently to check your system for viruses.