Lex Friedman, Macworld April 10, 2012
Still not sure whether you’re infected with that Flashback malware that’s been making headlines? A new free app from a Mac programmer can you help you verify whether your Mac’s caught the bug.
Last week, Macworld Australia outlined everything you need to know about the Flashback trojan horse, but the most important thing you need to know is whether your Mac has fallen victim to it. You could muck about in Terminal to get the answer or you could grab Flashback Checker, a small utility from programmer Juan Leon.
First reported by Ars Technica, Leon’s program handles the task of combing through your Mac’s contents to find any traces of the Flashback malware.
Here’s how it works: When you launch the app, click its one button – Check for Flashback Infection. If the results display includes the message “No Signs of infection were found,” you can breathe easy. If you’re infected, the utility alerts you. Leon’s code doesn’t remove the malware; instead, it points you in the right direction to go about cleaning up your system, which includes running some very specific Terminal commands.
The latest variant of the Flashback trojan horse is capable of installing without requiring your password, even if all you did was visit a maliciously-crafted webpage. The malware exploits a Java vulnerability first patched by Oracle back in February; Apple only released an update to patch those flaws late last week, after the Flashback malware had already infected more than half a million Macs.
The curious can download the source code for Leon’s Flashback Checker as well.