Security Experts Warn Of New Mac Viruses

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Security experts are encouraging Mac users to get an antivirus program, due to new attacks.

A new set of attacks have made their way on the scene, causing a new set of problems for Mac users who once though they were safe from viruses. As most of you know, most Mac users currently don’t have an antivirus program installed, which causes problems if their Mac becomes over taken with a virus. Historically, Windows has been plagued with viruses, and OS X has been thought to be virtually safe, but today, a security expert warns Mac users of new viruses.

Security expert Graham Cluley of Sophos, in a report from Macworld, warns users of new found viruses over the past few weeks and encourages them to get an anti-virus program to help protect their data.The most recent virus found was one that affects Word for Mac, which allows the infiltrator to gain access to the user’s files. The virus only affects the 2004 and 2008 versions of Word for Mac, not the 2011. There’s also other viruses that take advantage of vulnerabilities in Java. Cluely talks about the precautions Mac users need to take:

“As we have seen on the Windows platform, the majority of the attacks do not exploit any weakness in the operating system but instead take advantage of the bug in people’s brains. Mac users can be just as easily duped as their Windows cousins into making poor choices, and could end up infected as a result.”

Besides installing an antivirus software, experts are also warning users to keep software updated. The Word for Mac virus is a prime example of why software needs to be updated, including the operating system. If users affected were on the 2011 version, they wouldn’t have problems.

You should be fine from viruses if you’re careful about what you install, but if you want to feel a bit safer when roaming the badlands (aka the Internet), we encourage you to install an antivirus program. Sophos, ClamXav (which asks for a donation (thanks, Sonal)), and iAntivirus ($30 a month) are among the best out there.

Which antivirus are you using on your Mac?

[image via Lifehacker]