Menu
Kaspersky launches free Flashback removal tool and website to check for infections

Kaspersky launches free Flashback removal tool and website to check for infections

Kaspersky website allows checking a Mac's unique hardware identifier against a database of 700,000 Flashback-infected Macs

Antivirus vendor Kaspersky Lab has launched a free removal tool for the Flashback Mac OS X malware and a website where users can check whether their computers are infected with it.

Flashback is the most widespread malware on the Mac OS X platform to date. Two antivirus companies, Doctor Web and Kaspersky Lab, independently confirmed on Wednesday and Friday, respectively, that well over 600,000 Mac computers have been infected with the latest variant of the Flashback Trojan horse.

Flashback first appeared in September 2011 and was originally distributed as a fake Flash Player installer. However, the number of infections drastically increased in March because the malware started infecting computers through Web-based attacks that exploited an unpatched Java vulnerability.

Antivirus vendor F-Secure was the first to publish instructions on how to check whether a Mac OS X system is infected with the latest Flashback variant and how to manually remove it.

However, F-Secure's instructions required users to type complicated commands in a Mac OS X terminal window and interpret the replies, which made them somewhat unsuitable for non-technical persons used to a graphical user interface.

In order to make it easier for average users to check whether their computers are infected, Kaspersky Lab launched a website on Monday where people can input their systems' unique hardware identifiers (UUIDs) to see if they are among the almost 700,000 Macs known to be infected with Flashback so far.

Kaspersky also released a stand-alone removal tool for the Flashback malware, which Mac owners can download and use for free. However, it's probably a good idea to install a full-featured antivirus program after running this tool in order to prevent future infections.

In addition, Kaspersky's director of global research and analysis, Costin Raiu, made several Mac OS X security recommendations in a blog post on Monday. These included setting up a non-administrator account for everyday use, switching to Google Chrome as primary browser because of its sandboxed Flash Player plug-in and silent automatic updates, disabling the Java and stand-alone Flash Player plug-ins from other browsers, installing all software updates distributed by Apple, upgrading Adobe Reader to version 10, using a separate keychain for passwords that can unlock very sensitive accounts and disabling the IPv6, AirPort or Bluetooth services when they're not needed and enabling full disk encryption.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Events

Why experience is the new battleground for partners

Join us for an exclusive webinar, in association with Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Technology Services Industry Association (TSIA) and learn about the latest industry insights and how technology services continue to evolve to deliver differentiated value, and how partners can be successful in 2021 and beyond.

Featured

Slideshows

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

Hundreds of leaders from the New Zealand IT industry gathered at the Hilton in Auckland on 17 November to celebrate the finest female talent in the Kiwi channel and recognise the winners of the Reseller News Women in ICT Awards (WIICTA) 2020.

The Kiwi channel gathers for the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards
Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards

The leading female front runners of the New Zealand ICT industry joined together for the annual Reseller News Women in ICT Awards event at the Hilton in Auckland, during which hundreds of guests celebrated 13 outstanding individuals who won awards, chosen from more than 50 finalists representing over 30 organisations.

Leading female front runners honoured at the 2020 Reseller News Women in ICT Awards
Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners

Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners

More than 500 channel leaders gathered in Auckland on 21 October at the ​Reseller News Innovation Awards ​2020 to celebrate the achievements of the New Zealand technology industry's top partners, start-ups, vendors, distributors and individuals.

Channel gathers to celebrate the Reseller News Innovation Awards 2020 winners
Show Comments