Apple’s Flashback Fiasco – What really happened ?

I’m usually not into MACs and I’m more of a PC guy. But, this is a story that you sure don’t want to miss. Guesses? 20 bucks says you’re right. Just so you know, I was talking about the Flashback trojan – one thing that’s been making news for about a couple of weeks now – sending tremors down the throat for people up at Apple’s offices.

Well, let’s cut the crap. Apple has always boasted itself to be the best computing environment – calling it ‘Totally Virus Free’. Oops… Sorry MACers ! Not any more.

It all started here – September 2011. Flashback virus was doing rounds disguised itself as Adobe Flash Player. The recent version of the Flashback variants, called by the name, Flashback.K is far more dangerous than the original version of Flashback in that, it gets installed without any user prompts and authorization, exploiting a java vulnerability. Out in the tech world, they call it drive-by download.

What can it do ?

Let’s assume you log into some malicious website hosting the java applet of the Flashback. If you happen to execute it, it installs itself into your device and infects the components. Much worse, the latest version of the Flashback virus forms a botnet – a network of computers capable of sharing information amongst themselves. Although the current version of malware doesn’t do anything suspicious, it sure, is capable of doing things very deadly, researchers say, like stealing confidential data.

The ground problem as to why this malware got spread so wide, is because of delayed Java updates in iOS devices. Instead of Oracle based updates – the who owns Java, Apple, has for long, issued its own update versions, for which it has always been cursed by the critics. This time, giving them a reason to rejoice – to point fingers at Apple and question – “Did I not tell you ?!” – because the Oracle had released patches for Flashback wayback in February.Had this patch been given to devices then, it may not have been alleviated one hundred percent, but definitely wouldn’t have got this far.

In lieu of this recent fiasco, Apple has finally issued a patch yesterday, that has brought down the number of infected devices significantly. It still needs to seen what’s lurking in the dark behind, and what Apple does to save its face.

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