Macs are known for being a lot less prone to security threats than their Widows competitors. However a powerful low-level malware called Thunderstrike has prompted Apple to up their game by incorporating a patch in the upcoming OSX Yosemite 10.10.2 release.
Thunderstrike works by employing a malicious actor to replace the firmware in Macs through use of a Thunderbolt device. This firmware controls the computer’s extremely low-level functions, almost making it invisible to the user. As long as everything still works, it’s no big deal. However it is capable of doing some pretty nasty things.
The actor plugs in the device and reboots the computer to replace the firmware with custom designed backdoors, theoretically allowing it to bypass any existing security protection. Because it is installed at the computer’s lowest levels, it can also survive reformatting of the device and reinstallation of the OSX operating system.
Apple’s fix should prevent the Mac’s boot ROM from being replaced as well as preventing it from being rolled back to a state where an attack would be possible again. It also demonstrates the company’s intent to keep its customers safe and happy by addressing problems head on, before they go beyond control.
This also highlights Apple users’ lack of immunity to security issues, further reiterating the importance of taking security seriously regardless of which products are being used. The best thing users can do is to make sure they are running the latest operating systems on all their devices. ITC Secure Networking can help make your business more secure as well as integrating online and network security services. Contact us to make an enquiry:[email protected] or call 020 7517 3900