Even though Apple consulting isn’t really our thing, we feel that it’s our responsibility to keep up with the “going-ons” in the Apple world. Recently there has been a public outcry for help dealing with this “Malware” application called MacDefender. MacDefender is not malware as people know it in the Windows world. It’s not sending your information in some background application to some marketing company who can send you more crap you don’t need.
MacDefender is a “phishing scam“. MacDefender claims to be an anti-virus software that requires you enter your credit card information to download. As most phishing scams go they want you to put your credit card information in so they can either use your card to buy stuff or try commit identity theft.
If you have fallen for this scam, first thing is to call you credit card company, and put your card on watch. This way you won’t have to cancel your card, but if anything suspicious shows up they will know that it wasn’t you. Secondly you want to remove this application from your computer. According to Apple’s support website just follow these steps:
- Move or close the Scan Window
- Go to the Utilities folder in the Applications folder and launch Activity Monitor
- Choose All Processes from the pop up menu in the upper right corner of the window
- Under the Process Name column, look for the name of the app and click to select it; common app names include: MacDefender, MacSecurity or MacProtector
- Click the Quit Process button in the upper left corner of the window and select Quit
- Quit Activity Monitor application
- Open the Applications folder
- Locate the app ex. MacDefender, MacSecurity, MacProtector or other name
- Drag to Trash, and empty Trash
Malware also installs a login item in your account in System Preferences. Removal of the login item is not necessary, but you can remove it by following the steps below.
- Open System Preferences, select Accounts, then Login Items
- Select the name of the app you removed in the steps above ex. MacDefender, MacSecurity, MacProtector
- Click the minus button
Apple says that in the next version of OS X 10.6 there will be built in defense for this issue, but for now just follow the steps. We hope this helps you with this issue – and if you have any questions about it, don’t hesitate to ask our support team.