In possibly the biggest Mac malware attacks of recent years, the Java based Flashback malware has already infected 600,000 Macs around the world, Ars Technica reports on information provided by Russian anti-virus company Doctor Web. Even though the article claims 550,000, this was quickly updated to 600,000 later on Twitter.
The majority of infected Macs are in the United States and Canada, however other parts of the world are infected as well. The huge irony of this story: Dr. Web has detected that 274 bots are operating from, wait for, it, Cupertino! Right under Apple’s noses.
How do you protect yourself? Couldn’t be easier. Download the Java update here which fixes the exploit, or, if you have a machine running Leopard, there are plenty of anti-virus programs that will prevent it installing. In addition, F-Secure provides instructions for how to check if your machine is already infected.
The malware detects if an anti-virus is installed, if one is, it won’t bother to run. I would personally recommend ClamXav, which is free and open source.