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Through the years, Apple products have shown resistance to different kinds of malware that Microsoft computers weren’t able to dodge. This, however, does not mean that Macs are invulnerable. Here are some threats you should watch out for to keep your Mac protected.

What are the threats that can affect your Mac?

There are several general virus types that hit Apple products, and their effects can range from merely annoying to downright destructive.

1. Adware – Adware are unwanted programs that bombard users with pop-up advertisements. Some malicious adware piggyback spyware onto their deployment protocols, which can record your typing habits with keyloggers and keyboard sniffers, as well as monitor your browsing behavior.

2. Sniffers – Sniffers are usually designed to detect certain words on a webpage and in a person’s typing pattern in order to trigger the keylogger. For instance, when you type your password, sniffers can activate the keylogger to copy the information you type and steal your login details.

3. Trojan horses – Trojan horses can infect both Macs and PCs, and they are often deployed through fake software installers or unsecured updates. They parade as legitimate software that actually contains a nasty surprise once installed. A notorious Trojan horse for Macs is the MacDownloader, which attempts to steal personal data stored in Apple Keychain.

4. Macro viruses – Macro viruses attack computers by running an executory code that could take screenshots, format hard drives, corrupt files, deliver more malware, and access webcams and mics. They are triggered when a user opens an infected macros-enabled file, hence the name.

5. Ransomware – Macs held off ransomware for a while, but nowadays, even they can be vulnerable to it. KeRanger was one of the first big ransomware outbreaks for Macs. After remotely encrypting the computer and hibernating for three days, KeRanger would issue a .txt file containing instructions for decryption in return for one bitcoin.

Does your Mac have a virus?

Now that you know what kinds of viruses and malware your macOS could be affected with, here are some ways to tell if your Mac is infected with one:

1. Pop-up ads – If you’re seeing more pop-ups on your computer than usual, your computer probably infected. An unusual amount of banner ads and pop-ups may mean that your computer is due for an update and/or a virus scan.

2. Slowness – Mac users fear one thing above all: the spinning wheel of death. This little rainbow-colored spinning cursor wheel indicates that the computer is having trouble processing at usual speeds. This slowness can often be caused by overwhelming requests from simultaneous processes — likely of dubious origin — running in the background.

3. Browser issues – Viruses sometimes do weird things to Safari or Firefox such as change its homepage or redirect a preset landing page to a site you’ve never seen before. If your browser starts behaving oddly, crashes regularly, or is often unresponsive, your Mac might have a virus.

Computer security is a matter of importance no matter what operating system you use. Reach out to our experts for an assessment of your network today.

If you are looking for an expert to help you find the best solutions for your business talk to GCInfotech about a free technology assessment

Published with consideration from TechAdvisory.org SOURCE

Apple’s continuous improvement of its operating systems will give us iOS 14 and other OS updates this September. These will be previewed and tested by developers come Apple’s WWDC on June 22, but here’s a quick peek at some of the new apps and features.

Nifty app tweaks

Apple is developing new features for some of its prominent apps, and these tweaks may just make the cut come September.

MESSAGES

  • Mention will let users tag people with the @ symbol, just like in Slack. This will also allow users to mute conversations but receive push notifications whenever they are directly mentioned.
  • Mark as unread will allow users to highlight messages so they would not forget requests or tasks and get back to these at a later time.
  • Retract will enable users to delete messages they’ve sent, with the deletion action visible to both sender and recipient.

ACTIVITY

  • Kids mode on the watchOS 7 will track movement time instead of calories burned. This is because the first metric is deemed healthier to track (from a mental health perspective) for children.

HEALTH

  • Sleep tracking will grant users the ability to set sleep goals and receive tips for improving slumber.

FIND MY

  • new notification feature will let users receive alerts when someone does not arrive at an expected place and time. For example, parents would be notified if their child does not make it home on time.

New features

CARKEY

This will let users pair their iPhone and/or Apple Watch with their NFC-enabled vehicles. They can then lock, unlock, and start their ride with their Apple device instead of the car’s physical key. The electronic keys will be kept in the Wallet app, and “duplicates” can be shared with friends and family via the Messages app. Based on the leaked screenshots and code of the feature in development, BMW might be the first brand that CarKey works with.

ICLOUD KEYCHAIN FEATURES

In development are:

  • A way to store two-factor authentication (2FA) codes, which would purportedly allow the Keychain to generate its own codes and let the user forgo the need to use a separate 2FA app
  • Password reuse warnings that remind users to create different passwords for different accounts

CLIPS

Codenamed “Clips,” this feature will let users interact with certain content in third-party apps without having to download those apps. By scanning a QR code that’s linked to an app, the user opens a floating card that contains the interactive content. The card gives users the option to download the app, or open the app if it’s already installed.

New apps

FITNESS APP

This new app, which is expected to be named “Fit” or “Fitness” once released, will allow users to download from a wide library of fitness videos and receive help for completing workout activities. Activities include core exercises, strength training, stretching, yoga, dance, and running, among others.

This standalone app will coexist with the Activity app and will be available on iOS 14, tvOS 14, and watchOS 7. This means that you can sync your fitness routines across many Apple devices — i.e., you can watch workout videos on your iPhone, iPad, or Apple TV, and track your progress on your Apple Watch.

As of this writing, it appears that Apple won’t charge users anything for workout routines, though whether the app and its functionalities would end up on the final versions of the OSs remains to be seen this September.

AUGMENTED REALITY APP

This app would grant users access to information and experiences by triggering QR code tags or iBeacon transmitters (i.e., IoT devices that activate apps in nearby mobile devices) that are placed in specific spots or items in a certain location. For instance, if a user is in an Apple Store, they can check the QR code tag of a particular device to receive information about that device.

New tech is amazing! To take advantage of the latest that IT has to offer, schedule a consultation with our experts today.

To learn more about how to safeguard your business, or if you are looking for an expert to help you find the best solutions for your business talk to GCInfotech about a free technology assessment.

Published with consideration from TechAdvisory.org SOURCE

Although more generally secure than Windows computers and Android devices, Apple computers and devices have security threats, too. Thinking that Macs and iPhones don’t need protection is just asking for trouble. Follow these tips to bolster the security of all your business gadgets.

Keep abreast of current security threats

Educate your organization about the most common ways systems are infected or hacked. Apple users in your organization must be aware of recent security updates on iPhones and Macs, for instance.

  • iPhones – Security and privacy are key concerns with every iOS update, which is why Apple highlighted its privacy and security features when it released iOS 13, the latest iOS version. However, in June, it was reported that 38% of Apple iOS apps contained critical vulnerabilities, which was only slightly lower compared to Android’s 43%. The vulnerabilities were reportedly caused by weaknesses in security mechanisms.
  • Macs – In 2017’s WannaCry/WannaCrypt ransomware attacks, only Windows machines were affected. This shows that Apple does a fairly good job of guarding against threats. That said, Macs are certainly not immune to malware and viruses. In 2019, a malware called OSX/CrescentCore was reportedly found on several websites and worked by installing an infected file or a Safari extension.

Practice secure web browsing

The vast majority of security breaches happen when a user installs programs, knowingly or unknowingly, or clicks on links in emails or on the Web that contain malware. Take these precautions to avoid intrusions:

  1. Never open email attachments from unknown senders especially those with file extensions that are for programs, i.e., DMG. These include attachments in emails from large companies and financial institutions. When in doubt, contact the sender to verify.
  2. Always hover over links before you click on them. If you receive an email with a link in it, hover over the URL to see where it links to and look for spelling or grammar mistakes, or any other indication that it’s a fraudulent link.
  3. Don’t automatically open any downloaded apps. Verify an app by taking a look at its name and its source information. If the site appears to be different from where you downloaded it, the app may be infected.
  4. When you try to watch content from any random website, many sites will ask you to download a plugin or video player. It’s best to avoid these sites altogether because many of them are known to host malware that can install itself.
  5. When in doubt, don’t take action. If you’re unsure about a link or app you are being asked to download, simply don’t click on it or download it.

Install antivirus scanners

It’s amazing how many Mac users don’t bother with an antivirus scanner. These tools are indispensable for keeping your systems and data secure. There are a number of excellent scanners out there, so make sure to pick a solution that covers both desktop and mobile devices to ensure optimal security. We can also help you pick the best solution for your business.

Consult IT experts

Strengthen the security of your computers, mobile devices, and network by working with an IT expert like us. We take the time to get to know how you use your devices to discover your security needs and recommend an integrated, effective solution for you. To learn more about how to safeguard your business, or if you are looking for an expert to help you find the best solutions for your business talk to GCInfotech about a free technology assessment.

Published with consideration from TechAdvisory.org SOURCE