The behavior of malware varies, as does the severity of a malware infection.Some variants – like Cryptolocker and Aussie specific Torrentlocker – encrypt files and force the victims to pay a ransom to get their files back.Others capture every key-press, relaying it back to an attacker who then pores over it, looking for usernames, passwords and credit card details.
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This even extends to the sources where users can download apps.
The only officially supported and authorized place to get third-party applications is though Apple’s official App Store.
This has done a lot to prevent users from accidentally downloading malware as they browse through the darkest recesses of the Internet. Apple has a number of stringent security procedures that prevent malware from getting on to the App Store in the first place, including static analysis of all submitted source code. In 2013, researchers at Georgia Tech managed to submit a malicious program to the App Store.
Apple has historically marketed its desktop products as being impervious to the rampant malware that plagued Microsoft systems in the early 2000s, but the i Phone’s swelling popularity has made it a prime target.
According to reports, malware affecting “thousands” of i Phones can steal App Store credentials – but the majority of i OS users remain perfectly safe.
Here’s what you need to know about malware and Apple’s approach to mobile security.
Malware is a portmanteau of ‘malicious’ and ‘software’, and it refers to any software that forcibly gains access to, gathers data from or disrupts the otherwise normal operation of a device – often with damaging consequences.
But, for the most part, i OS has somehow escaped the worst of it. Well, some very clever design choices on the part of Apple.
Apple designed i OS with an emphasis on security, and made a number of architectural decisions that made it a fundamentally secure system.