Apple Issues Second Java Update In Two Days Following Infection Of 600,000 Macs

Apple Issues Second Java Update In Two Days Following Infection Of 600,000 Macs

Keep Java updated on your Mac to eliminate threats from the Flashback trojan.

Apple has issued a second update to Java in just two days this week as the company works to patch vulnerabilities that have led to the infection of over 600,000 Macs. The Java for OS 2012-002 update is now available to download via Software Update, and it’s recommended that you update.

The updates follow this week’s report from the Russian antivirus company Dr. Web, which claimed over 600,000 Macs had now been affected by a Flashback trojan that exploits a vulnerability in older versions of Java. Apple’s first update had already fixed multiple vulnerabilities, the most concerning of which could “allow and untrusted Java applet to execute arbitrary code outside the Java sandbox.”

However, the company obviously discovered other issues and a second update, which brings “improved compatibility, security, and reliability,” is now available to download.

If you suspect that your system might be infected, or you’d just like to rule out the possibility, you can check out yesterday’s post for instructions on how to check. There’s also a link to F-Secure’s guide on removing and Flashback malware you may have.

In Apple’s next major Mac OS X update, dubbed Mountain Lion, it has introduced a new feature called “Gatekeeper,” which can prevent the system from installing any software that wasn’t obtained from the Mac App Store. This should prevent malware like the Flashback trojan from infecting your system.

  • Don Pope

    Gatekeeper won’t prevent this because that’s the first thing most people will disable.

  • brianistweeting

    It’s easy enough to keep the functionality of Gatekeeper without disabling it. Control-click if you need to bypass it at a trusted source site. Honestly though, the trojan itself requires people to accept it for it to actually be on their computer. If they’re foolish enough to do that, I really don’t think they’re going to be advanced enough to even know how to navigate system preferences. I know that’s not saying much, but still.

  • brian2012

    Should I be concerned that the Java update isn’t showing up in software update for me?

  • Jarhead38

    In the interests of journalistic accuracy, your article should have stated, “Alleged infection of over 600,000 Macs.” It is impossible to know with any degree of accuracy how many, if any, Macs have been infected.

    I always seems that when here is any “news” of Mac infections, it’s Chicken Little the sky is falling time.

    Accuracy should be your first responsibility.

    Carl.

  • Jarhead38

    In the interests of journalistic accuracy, your article should have stated, “Alleged infection of over 600,000 Macs.” It is impossible to know with any degree of accuracy how many, if any, Macs have been infected.

    I always seems that when here is any “news” of Mac infections, it’s Chicken Little the sky is falling time.

    Accuracy should be your first responsibility.

    Carl.

  • Gunner

    “Gatekeeper won’t prevent this because that’s the first thing most people will disable.”

    Not so! As more and more less ‘geeky’ folks move to the Mac from the Windows side, or because they want the same ‘walled garden’ environment of the iOS realm, they will keep GateKeeper active, mainly because they will not bother to learn how to turn it off nor bypass it. There are many, many people out there who ‘trust’ Apple’s Mac App Store and iOS App Store and don’t want to go looking anywhere else because of the risks (overblown as they may be) of being ‘hacked’ or of downloading some piece of malware.

About the author

Killian BellKillian Bell is a staff writer based in the U.K. He has an interest in all things tech and also covers Android over at CultofAndroid.com. You can follow him on Twitter via @killianbell.

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