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Home » Hacking News » Symantec false Mac trojan alert

Symantec false Mac trojan alert

by Nikola Strahija on May 10th, 2005 Mac users running various versions of NAV for Mac were left under the false impression that their swap files were infected with malware called "Hacktool.Underhand".

The bogus warnings were frequently accompanied by system crashes on machines running Mac OS X. Symantec quickly released updated definition files to resolve the problem but not before the a significant number of Mac fans were inconvenienced. Most of them spent some time trying to resolve the problem and get rid of the Trojan, to be rather angry when they found out it was all only a programming error.

In a statement, Symantec confirmed that there was a false alarm problem with recent anti-virus updates to its Apple Mac security software, adding that the problem has now been fixed. The issue was restricted to users running Norton AntiVirus 9.x for Macintosh with virus definitions dated 28 April or Norton AntiVirus 7.0.2 or 8.x for Macintosh with virus definitions dated 1 June. Norton AntiVirus for Macintosh 7.x on Mac OS 9 was not affected by the problem.

Symantec wasn't able to say how many times the dodgy definitions had been downloaded so the size of the problem remains unclear. Users are instructed to download updated virus definition files and also delete all quarantined files.

Last month a false anti-virus update from Trend Micro caused problems for Windows PCs of many who applied it. The Japanese firm pulled the update 90 minutes after it was issued but Japan was particularly badly hit. BitDefender, Sophos and McAfee have all been hit by similar glitches in the past.

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