This malware on MacOS does not steal your personal data or banking information, but it can mobilize the resources of your machine to undermine cryptomoney behind your back. More importantly, it has been hidden in the shadows for five years without being properly identified by cyber security researchers.
For nearly five years, OSAMiner malware has been sneaking around on the Mac without ever being analyzed by cyber security researchers. This was noticed when Apple computer users complained of slow detection times on their machines due to the malware mobilizing their resources to undermine cryptographic systems without their knowledge. After five years since its appearance in 2015, SentinelOne researchers have finally got their hands on it, and explain why it has been hidden in the shadows for so long.
OSAMiner was pretty well done, since its designers had found an unstoppable trick to disguise it: the run-only mode of AppleScript scripts. This meant that cyber security researchers could not read its script properly, making its analysis – and thus its eradication – simply impossible. « Run-only AppleScripts are surprisingly rare in the world of macOS malware. OSAMiner, which has probably been running for at least 5 years, shows exactly how AppleScripts can be executed to prevent any attempt to scan, » the researchers explained.
Like Covid-19, this computer virus subsequently mutated to be able to break into three different scripts running on its own, making the task even more difficult for the researchers. But after years of struggle, SentinelOne employees were able to break through this strong shell to analyze OSAMiner, using an AppleScript disassembler. Cyber security researchers also detail this discovery in this detailed report, which includes many details about this notorious minor cryptomware malware.
As for the malware itself, it attacks Macs and has mainly spread to Asia, the researchers say. It mainly infects cracked games such as League of Legends and software such as the Office suite for Mac. If this is the case, and you’re seeing sudden slowness on your Mac, you’d better run a virus scan, now that the malware has come to light.
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