Mac Security Threats Outpace Windows For The First Time

Malwarebytes, an industry leader in the field of endpoint protection and remediation, has released a report covering the state of malware. One of the important insights the report has uncovered is that Apple-manufactured products have threats growing at a faster rate than their Windows-based counterparts. The news is groundbreaking as it signals the first time in the history of electronic threat assessment that the rate of growth of threats to Mac devices has outpaced those to Windows devices. Additionally, the company noted that cybercriminals put extra focus on breaking into business targets throughout 2019.

Increased Sophistication of Attacks

Attacks from malicious users and parties ramped up in 2019, with hackers utilizing new, sophisticated techniques. Familiar names such as TrickBot and Emotet, made a return throughout 2019, alongside new ransomware families including Ryuk, Phobos, and Sodinokibi. New hack tools and registry disablers also made a significant impact in the report, showing the level of sophistication that attackers have evolved. Adware has also been a major thorn in the side of businesses running both Windows and Mac machines, as they hijack system resources and become extra-aggressive in serving ads.

Critical Findings in the Report

The report offered insights into business security, including the realization that ransomware is still a significant problem for hospitals, schools, and municipalities. Malwarebytes noted that the most significant growth occurred in new ransomware families such as Ryuk and Sodinokibi. Pre-installed malware became a severe threat over the last year, with the company noting the presence of pre-installed potentially unwanted programs increasing to over 300,000 instances. These pre-installed malware instances were mostly located on Android machines. Credit-card skimming scams were also obvious threats in 2019. Software such as Magecart allows malicious users to collect credit card data from users by spoofing legitimate transactions. Malwarebytes predicts the trend of skimming will continue in 2020, with more eCommerce platforms falling victim.