The Imunizator, or MacSwp-B, trojan, as it is being called, tries to scare Mac users into purchasing unnecessary software by claiming that privacy issues have been discovered on their computer, Sophos said in a news release.
Imunizator makes bogus claims about Mac's privacy in an attempt to fool users into purchasing unneeded software, Sophos said.
Imunizator is similar to an earlier Mac malware variant called MacSweeper, according to Sophos. MacSweeper's developers, however, have said their product is legitimate and useful.
Basing new malware on previous trojans as a way of bypassing detection by anti-virus software is common, Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos, said.
"Windows users are no stranger to 'scareware' like this, but it is rarer on the Apple Macintosh,” Cluley said. “Nevertheless, MacSwp-B's discovery does follow fast on the heels of other malware that has been identified on the Mac OS X platform in recent months. Cybercrime against Mac users may be small in comparison to Windows attacks, but it is growing.”
Mac users should ensure that their anti-virus software and patches are up to date, he said.