i got hit : macs can get viruses too!

I am so cutting edge.

There is now a MAC virus (or a few) in this world, as of maybe last week -- and it got me!

This post is not lovely nor delicious but I figured it would be helpful to report.

What happened and what I know about it:

I likely got hit by clicking on some image in a Google Image search. That's their fave way to get you these days so be very careful about what links you click from Google Images.

A window opened that looked suspicious and that's when the virus snuck onto my computer. Lil devil.

What it does is not clear yet, but it probably tries to get into your bank accounts and valuable logins in hopes to steal from you. Nasty!

What it certainly did was place a line of evil script into the home page of my website AND on the index.php page of this Wordpress site. For real! SO gross.

How I found out:

Google emailed me early Sunday morning to alert me. They crawl the web and post warnings for visitors if a site appears to have malicious code embedded. So if you went to my site on Sunday, you may have seen one of those warnings: "This site may harm your computer..." Not a good thing!

I opened my website and found the code pretty quickly. Removed it and searched every other file to make sure all were clean. Then I requested that Google check the site again in order to okay it for the rest of the world's browsers. They turned that around same-day, which was awesome. By Sunday night, my site had been approved and there was no more warning posted.

What else ensued:

I installed the trustworthy and advanced anti-virus software for Macs, made by Sophos. Download a free copy here. Very simple and runs just like any other one, searching all corners of your computer for anything icky.

A search proved that there was a threat on my machine. The culprit was a zip file that had been downloaded into my Downloads folder. My IT buddy, Jason, helped me identify it and quickly removed it.

While everything got cleaned up, I logged into all my accounts and changed every password. That sucked and took forever but was very important.

So far, it seems I may have resolved everything but I'll continue to scan my computer daily from now on. Keep your Wordpress site updated all the time as well.

One last tip from Jason:

"I found a way close the security hole that the virus used to get into your computer.  It's easy to do just follow the instructions below:"
  1. Open your Safari web browser by clicking on the Safari icon in the dock.
  2. Click on Safari in your Safari menu, located at the top of your screen. When the drop-down menu appears, choose Preferences.
  3. Select the General tab from the Preferences window, which is now overlaying your browser window.
  4. You will now see a check box labeled "Open 'safe' files after downloading", located near the bottom of the Preferences window. If this box is checked, click on the check mark and verify that it is no longer active.
  5. Click on the red circle/x located in the top left hand corner of the Preferences window to complete the process. You will now be returned to your main browser window.

 

The honeymoon is over, Mac-owners. Oy!