Bitdefender Labs evaluated global data on the threat level for macOS systems. The result of the 2022 global telemetry figures shows that Apple hardware is targeted by cybercriminals, albeit to a lesser extent than Windows devices.
The more common Windows or Android devices are more attractive to hackers. The results show: macOS hardware is not secure per se. The top risks included Trojans at 51.8%, Potentially Unwanted Applications (PUAs) at 25.3%, and Adware at 22.6%.
Cybercriminals don’t attack Macs as often as, say, Windows machines. After all, the latter are still more widespread. According to Statcounter experts, Microsoft still dominates the desktop market with a share of 63% compared to 18% for macOS. The larger attack surface means that hackers are more active in the Microsoft environment.
Still, macOS environments are not a blind spot for malware actors. Apple felt compelled to proactively close vulnerabilities. use hackersSocial engineering and automated spray-and-pray techniques to target Mac users. At the same time, professional spyware vendors are attacking Apple iOS hardware. iOS and macOS systems share many key components, such as the web rendering engine WebKit. Apple has also released security updates for such critical vulnerabilities. At the same time, attacks against macOS hardware are becoming more efficient. Careless updates and poor cybersecurity hygiene of Mac users, which are in no way inferior to other users here, make criminal work easier.
Risk factor Trojans
Trojans attack non-updated systems where hackers encounter unpatched vulnerabilities. A lack of update discipline creates a concrete danger. At the same time, attackers use the usual and well-known mechanisms of social engineering via spam,Phishing or social media, malvertising or manipulated file downloads via torrent or warez websites. Attacks designed for Macs typically require the victim to manually launch an executable file. That is why they attach great importance to the fact that theirMalware appears like a legitimate application.
Potentially Unwanted Applications
One in four threats is a PUA. The PUA – be it just annoying or dangerous – is distributed by the hackers as freeware, repackaged applications or utilities (remote administration, system cleaning, supposed virus scanners, energy saving apps and storage space management), all of which have hidden functionalities for recording data or cryptomining. 8% of PUAs are cryptominers.
Users should not assume that their macOS hardware is secure. It just gets attacked less often. A dedicated cybersecurity solution is necessary for Apple users, as is strict update discipline and alertness to suspicious content. Downloading from unofficial download channels like torrent or warez should be taboo.