Apple has identified and blocked apps containing WireLurker, malicious code to suposdely help spying on Chinese iPhone users. Read MoreHidden in software available and installed from the App store, it waits until an iPhone or iPad is connected and then steals the data on the device.
The Silicon Valley security company Palo Alto Networks disclosed the hacking tool in a research paper Wednesday afternoon.
Apple said in a written statement Thursday.
“We are aware of malicious software available from a download site aimed at users in China, and we’ve blocked the identified apps to prevent them from launching,”
Palo Alto Networks found the malicious code in 467 apps on China’s Maiyadi App Store for Mac computers. The apps had been downloaded more than 356,000 times, the company said.
With the prolition of smart devices, tablets, iPhones and the rest of them all it was only a matter of time the main platforms to be attacked.
The incident highlights that smartphones, which have become personal computers with smaller screens, increasingly face the same security threats as laptops and desktops.
Palo Alto Networks said the software, which it calls WireLurker, appears to be the first publicly known malware that can infect an iPhone like a computer virus.
Getting malware onto iPhones traditionally has been difficult because of the way Apple walls off software running on the device. Usually, users install can non-Apple software on an iPhone only if it is authorized by Apple and downloaded through the company’s App Store.
In this case, the hackers appear to have found a backdoor into iPhones and iPads by hacking Mac computers rather than the mobile devices directly.
In a statement, Apple warned users to download only software from “trusted sources.”
Anyone know if you have to allow the following feature to get infected?