New Mac OS X Trojan horse spies, steals and requisitions GPU for Bitcoin mining

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2014
A new Trojan horse hidden in a Mac OS X application can steal sensitive user data and take control of the computer?s GPU to generate Bitcoins, a form of currency used online.



In a report released on Saturday, security firm Sophos said that DevilRobber, a Trojan horse that can steal sensitive user data, was found hidden inside copies of Graphic Converter 7.4 downloaded from bit-torrent file-sharing sites.



DevilRobber, also known as "OSX/Miner-D," can steal usernames and passwords and is capable of spying on users by taking screenshots of their activity and sending the images online. In addition, the Trojan is able to run scripts that can copy information ?regarding truecrypt data, Vidalia (TOR plugin for Firefox), your Safari browsing history, and .bash_history? to a dump.txt file.



The malware has also been found to search for ?pthc? files, a term that is used to describe pre-teen hardcore pornography. It is not known at this time whether one of the secondary features of DevilRobber is to find traces of child abuse on affected computers.



Another unusual feature for the new Trojan is its capability of taking over a Mac's GPU in order to generate Bitcoins, a digital currency that can be used to perform online instant payments without the oversight of a banking authority.



Users generate Bitcoins on personal computers after installing Bitcoin Miner, an application that?s compatible with Mac, Windows and Linux systems. Once obtained, Bitcoins are stored in the user?s digital wallet and can be used for future online payments. Bitcoins can also be exchanged for actual currency with the current exchange rate reportedly valuing one Bitcoin at US$3.20.



In addition to harnessing the power of the GPU to generate more Bitcoins, DevilRobber can also steal the user?s existing Bitcoin wallet if it finds the appropriate files.



Sophos suggests users be aware of signs that point to a malware attack. For example, a malware attack can result in the slowdown of overall computing performance, with affected users reporting sluggishness as the Trojan steals GPU resources for mining purposes.



In order to avoid unwanted DevilRobber installations, Mac users are advised to refrain from downloading software via untrusted sources, even if they appear to be legitimate. It is not known at this time whether other Mac applications available on torrent sites come bundled with the new Trojan horse.



DevilRobber (OSX/Miner-D) Trojan horse | Source: Sophos



Apple has yet to acknowledge the new threat, though common anti-virus programs are able to detect DevilRobber.



The new malware is the most recent in a wave of programs targeting an increasing number of Mac owners. Apple recently cleared a threat from a non-functional Chinese Trojan horse that disguised itself as a PDF download.



Recently various instances of a different, more advanced malware program emerged. ?Flashback? posed as an Adobe Flash installer, with a later upgraded version programmed to disable the default OS X anti-malware protection thus leaving systems vulnerable to subsequent attacks.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 45
    conradjoeconradjoe Posts: 1,887member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    A new Trojan horse distributed as part of existing Mac OS X applications can steal sensitive user data and take control of the computer?s GPU to generate Bitcoins, a form of currency used online.




    This sounds serious.



    What is the best antivirus software for Macs? How many people neglect to install it?



    Why isn't protection built into the OS? Mac users generally can't be expected to find and install such things. The machine should Just Work.
  • Reply 2 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ConradJoe View Post


    This sounds serious.



    It's not. Stop being a troll. Stop spreading FUD.



    Quote:

    What is the best antivirus software for Macs?



    Little Snitch.



    Quote:

    How many people neglect to install it?



    Everyone intelligent.



    Quote:

    Why isn't protection built into the OS?



    It is. Stop being a troll. Stop spreading FUD.



    Quote:

    The machine should Just Work.



    The trolls should Shut Up.
  • Reply 3 of 45
    macrulezmacrulez Posts: 2,455member
    deleted
  • Reply 4 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MacRulez View Post


    ?prohibits all other means of putting your software on your Mac other than the Apple AppStore.



    I'm all alone? there's no one here beside me?
  • Reply 5 of 45
    noirdesirnoirdesir Posts: 1,027member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ConradJoe View Post


    This sounds serious.



    What is the best antivirus software for Macs? How many people neglect to install it?



    Why isn't protection built into the OS? Mac users generally can't be expected to find and install such things. The machine should Just Work.



    Things are getting more sophisticated but malware hiding in illegally downloaded applications has existed for years on the Mac. Download anything illegal at your own risk. To be more specific, do not agree to the dialogue box warning you that you about to run a downloaded executable for the first time, do not run an installer, click install or enter your password unless you know it comes from a legitimate source.



    There is Sophos which is commercial, there is Clam AV (www.clamav.net) which is opensource (and there is Norton which for years was worse than the malware it was supposed to protect you from).



    OS X has a built-in antivirus software that is based on signatures. Most if not all antivirus software on Windows is based on signatures and heuristics, the latter can catch malware that is still unknown, it can however also catch legitimate processes and files (false positives).
  • Reply 6 of 45
    so basically, another "threat" giving publicity making the PC users go "lol" cause macs gets "virus" too even though it's another trojan that requires a moron user to install it.



    Still waiting on an actual threat that doesn't require a user to be an idiot and install it manually by installing flash (i mean seriously, flash using an apple installer? that'll be the day) or bonus anti virus, or pirated software.
  • Reply 7 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MacRulez View Post


    It will, just as soon as Apple prohibits all other means of putting your software on your Mac other than the Apple AppStore.



    Be careful what you wish for....



    honestly it's going that way, it's the only way apple can keep dumb users from messing up their computer.



    for people who got this new threat. You stole someones software, now someone is stealing from you, what goes around comes around.
  • Reply 8 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ConradJoe View Post


    Why isn't protection built into the OS?



    It is. It's called XProtect.
  • Reply 9 of 45
    Hmm....starting to hear more and more of these things.
  • Reply 10 of 45
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    I'm all alone? there's no one here beside me?



    You're not alone. However, I am still trying to get my brain around the level of stupidity of someone who would actually download a pirated version GraphicConverter. This absolutely wonderful application works without paying the license fee. It is readily downloadable from the Lemkesoft website. What next? Will Sophos find a trojan that demands all of your bank account numbers in a pirated version of iTunes?
  • Reply 11 of 45
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,687member
    So, basically. The only people who can be affected by this are morons. That about sums it up.
  • Reply 12 of 45
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,215member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ConradJoe View Post


    This sounds serious.




    Yeah. People stealing software by using torrent sites is serious
  • Reply 13 of 45
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,511member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    I'm all alone? there's no one here beside me?



    Nah, I'm watching him too. Twenty-two posts so far today, on eight topics. He's been at it for nearly twelve hours, with a break for two hours.



    Or do I misread you?
  • Reply 14 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post


    Nah, I'm watching him too. Twenty-two posts so far today, on eight topics. He's been at it for nearly twelve hours, with a break for two hours.



    Or do I misread you?



    Nope, that's exactly what I'm talking about. Trolls replying to trolls replying to trolls. Ad infinitum.
  • Reply 15 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by noirdesir View Post


    To be more specific, do not agree to the dialogue box warning you that you about to run a downloaded executable for the first time, do not run an installer, click install or enter your password unless you know it comes from a legitimate source.



    OS X has a built-in antivirus software that is based on signatures. Most if not all antivirus software on Windows is based on signatures and heuristics, the latter can catch malware that is still unknown, it can however also catch legitimate processes and files (false positives).



    I recommend ESET NOD32 to most people who ask. VirusBarrier X, Norton, etc all used to suck on Mac OS, but NOD32 is good. It's nice for running VMs too. Low memory footprint, unobtrusive.

    And whomever mentioned Little Snitch from Objective Development, that's a really awesome firewall.

    BitDefender is also good at finding stuff, but heavy on resources so I don't recommend it.



    For those that don't run AV, I assume you are smart enough to not install things to your Mac that you don't trust.



    For the average user who can barely type, AV is essential. Most people just click through UAC on Windows, or they will type their password into the box without reading on OS X.



    I use AV because I transfer files a lot across flash drives, which get scanned when they hit my USB port. If I find something on someone else's disk, I get rid of it for them, and tell them to run a scan on their machine.
  • Reply 16 of 45
    hirohiro Posts: 2,663member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    Nope, that's exactly what I'm talking about. Sock puppets astro-turfing to trolls replying to sock puppets. Ad infinitum.



    tftfy
  • Reply 17 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    A new Trojan horse hidden in a Mac OS X application can steal sensitive user data ... was found hidden inside copies of Graphic Converter 7.4 downloaded from bit-torrent file-sharing sites...



    This is hilarious.



    A Trojan who's main purpose is to steal a form of money no one uses or cares about is hidden inside a program that no one with any brains has used since 1995. It's like they are deliberately trolling for seniors or fools here.



    If you are in that minority of people who actually think Graphic Converter is a useful program and are furthermore in the minority of those folks in that want to steal it instead of pay for it, you richly deserve this Trojan.
  • Reply 18 of 45
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,354member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post


    This is hilarious.



    A Trojan who's main purpose is to steal a form of money no one uses or cares about is hidden inside a program that no one with any brains has used since 1995. It's like they are deliberately trolling for seniors or fools here.



    If you are in that minority of people who actually think Graphic Converter is a useful program and are furthermore in the minority of those folks in that want to steal it instead of pay for it, you richly deserve this Trojan.



    Agreed. I think it is a Trojan for OS9, Graphics Converter?...



    I am alway concerned the Nortons of this world put out this FUD or worse are behind it.



    On this subject AI and MacRumors need to be very careful not to be manipulated.
  • Reply 19 of 45
    It sounds like we are looking at the methods used to dismantle the porn ring by Anonymous. Tor? Porn? Drive encryption? Bitcoins? Sounds like something they would do. They could work up a good rep in the porn ring and seed a release that requires you to install that program (at the same time providing a cracked version, how convienient). Only Anonymous would break the law like that in order to catch the real criminals.
  • Reply 20 of 45
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    I'm all alone? there's no one here beside me?



    AI is losing the battle. At the rate it's been going lately - and the apparent editorial laxity - the die-hards might as well give up. I have. The last straw for me was the utterly disgusting, defiling posts on the Mona Simpson story that AI did not even bother to scrub.



    Too bad. It had a good thing going even while the gizmodos and the engadgets were losing their way.



    Not any more.\
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