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The InfoSec Landscape Is Changing, And No One Is Safe

Summary

New ransomware proves MacBooks are no longer secure.

This will act as a catalyst for increased spending on data storage by Apple customers.

Third-party vendors of cloud and HDD offerings may witness a significant near-term market expansion.

In the dynamic world of cloud computing and the Internet of Things, it is no news that cyber security has been a hot topic for both service and equipment providers in the tech landscape. It seems that every enterprise, every endpoint and every user is secure from nefarious technology, that is, until they're not. Apple, Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), long touted for their best-in-class system security, is the most recent victim of exploited vulnerabilities. No, we're not talking about how the FBI's newly-developed ability to bypass iOS security, but our focus is rather on a type of cyber attack whose popularity is rapidly on the rise.

On March 6, 2016, security provider Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW) reported that they detected a version of ransomware on Mac OS X which was dubbed "KeRanger." The bug attached itself to a program that had an existing Mac app development certificate, and thus was able to bypass the Apple Gatekeeper before encrypting files and holding them for ransom against the user. Infected systems present the user with a message before being redirected to a website where ransom in the form of 1 Bitcoin (~$400) is demanded as the sole method to freeing their files with a custom decryption key. A user who refuses to pay the ransom and doesn't have their files backed up is unfortunately and completely out of luck.

Attention towards KeRanger may have fizzled away for the time being, but it is a part of a trend that is becoming increasingly more attractive to hackers who have been behind other recent crypto-ransomware bugs such as CryptoLocker, CryptoWall, Locky, TeslaCrypt and CoinVault. The remainder of this article will focus on the potential...


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