The first Mac ransomeware found

Over the weekend security firm Palo Alto Networks confirmed that had found what it believes to be the first ever piece of Mac ransomeware in one of the most popular apps – Tranmission – a bit torrent client.

Called ‘KeRanger’ – once an unsuspecting user installs the infected app, KeRanger embeds itself in their system and goes to work encrypting certain types of data, including documents, images, audio and video files, as well as databases and email archives. It then asks victims to pay 1 Bitcoin (about $410 at the moment) in order to decrypt and regain access to their files. Not good.

The developers have since updated their installers to ensure the ransomware is removed but does this mean a sign of things to come? It’s a timely reminder that web security is fundamental and should not be forgotten whether you’re browsing at work – or cheekily downloading the latest episode of your favourite TV show via bit torrent at home.

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