Once thought impervious to computer viruses, Apple computers are now facing their first bout with a harmful computer virus. Anti-virus company Symantec, creator of Norton Anti-Virus discovered the virus known as the “iBotnet”. The iBotnet virus is a Trojan horse virus hiding itself in pirated copies of iWorks 09, a program similar to Microsoft Office.
According to CNN.com, the iBotnet virus has only affected a few thousand Mac machines. Many fear, however, that this number might be on the rise.
“As Macs continue to steal the business of PCs, more viruses will emerge to combat Macs. However, Mac’s OS (Operating System) requires a password for information to be downloaded, making viruses largely ineffective,” long time Mac user and Marist Sophomore Andrew Clinkman said.
The emergence of the iBotnet virus has many Marist Mac users fearing a lack of technical support.
“I find my problems as a Mac user with software and hardware is much harder to repair at a place that is not Mac friendly. However there is a growing population of Mac users in ResNet,” Clinkman said.
Despite the ominous tones the iBotnet virus brings, it is preventable and treatable using several different methods.
To prevent the Trojan horse, Symantec suggests downloading anti-virus software such as Norton Internet security for Macintosh.
The company also suggests keeping your computer updated with the newest patches. Users are also advised to use complex passwords, and to change them frequently. The full list of precautions can be found here http://www.symantec.com/norton/theme.jsp?themeid=ibotnet.
Although Mac users should start to become aware of potential viruses, they should not panic yet.
“Because Macs aren’t as affected as PCs are, viruses have less opportunity; Macs have a much simpler system,” Vassar Library employee Alex McCoy said.