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Mokes backdoor malware targets MacBooks, Windows laptops, and Linux PCs

MacBooks now vulnerable to malware

Enter the era of cross-platform malware: once a menace almost exclusive to Windows users, malware is now gone full-on mainstream, with widespread attacks across all operating systems, including Mac OS X, and Linux.

Early this year researchers from Kaspersky labs have detected an OS X variant of the Mokes malware, which originally targeted only Windows and Linux.

The malware, labeled Backdoor.OSX.Mokes, is a particularly nasty piece of software capable of stealing virtually any data from a Mac, and is also able to tap into a built-in camera and microphone, record keystrokes, and establishing a live feed of the desktop to a remote computer.

Upon installation, Mokes creates a number of backdoors, that makes it difficult to eliminate from a system. It’s unclear whether a hacker would be able to remote control a MacBook over a network when connected via Mokes in a similar way as other trojan malware, but the fact that this software has the ability to accomplish so many different tasks, makes it particularly dangerous to Mac users.

The advent of mainstream encrypted networks like Tor enable hackers to anonymize activity of any malware code in a much simpler way than in the past. This means that developing malware and even ransomware capable of taking over a Mac is now just as “cost effective” as it is to develop a Windows equivalent.

By this token, we can expect Mac OS X and even macOS Sierra to become a much bigger target than it ever was.

In recent months we have seen a growing volume of malware being developed for Mac OS X, including ransomware, although no incidents have been reported yet, in regard to Macs being compromised.

The presence of this kind of malware, however, should not be taken lightly, as demand for access to MacBooks and other Mac desktop systems is obviously growing, considering recent attempts to sneak ransomware directly into the Apple Apps Store.

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