Flashback infection worse than Conficker?

Flashback infection worse than Conficker?

Summary: Flashback could now be considered a pandemic larger than Conficker when you consider the number of Macs that are in use.

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TOPICS: Apple, Security
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in brief Flashback could now be considered a pandemic larger than Conficker.

Blogger Ed Bott from ZDNet Australia's sister site ZDNet US has crunched the numbers and estimates that based on the 600,000 infected Macs, a number that has now been verified by a second research lab, about 1 per cent of all Macs have been infected.

If 1 per cent doesn't sound like much, it needs some comparison for scale. The largest infection to hit Windows machines was Conficker. Bott writes that although Conficker infected 7 million PCs at its prime, that represented 0.7 per cent of all Windows machines.

What that means is that users can, today, pick any Mac and it's more likely to be infected with Flashback than if, during Conficker's peak, they randomly selected a Windows machine and tested for Conficker. In other words, it's easier to target more Mac users than PC users.

What's worse is that Conficker took several years to evolve and, as of last year, still was responsible for about 1.7 million infections — Flashback only started targeting Macs relatively recently.

Topics: Apple, Security

Michael Lee

About Michael Lee

A Sydney, Australia-based journalist, Michael Lee covers a gamut of news in the technology space including information security, state Government initiatives, and local startups.

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4 comments
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  • This couldn't POSSIBLY be true! After all, everyone knows Mac's don't get viruses.... NOT!
    DisloyalPragmatist
    • I've heard that being trotted out too many times. Now between SMB exploits and this, the argument of "security" can be finally put to rest.
      dmh_paul
  • And the point is: It doesn't matter what you use, if the bad guys see a way to make money out of an exploit they will.
    Scott W-ef9ad
    • YEs, being a victim is now more egalitarian.
      Patanjali