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Mac OSX Leap-A: Trojan, Virus, or Malware?

February 17th, 2006 ^Lestat Leave a comment Go to comments

Is there a worm in your apple?

From Reuters:

A malicious computer worm has been found that targets Apple Computer Inc.’s Mac OS X operating system, believed to be the first such virus aimed specifically at the Mac platform.

Leap-A a.k.a the Oompa Loompa Trojan spreads through the iChat program. It trys to send itself to all the buddies in your buddy list. That is the main method of spread/ infection. The way to get the virus is to actually accept the file when prompted. The virus targets the Cocoa application in Macs.

Sophos.com calls this “This is the first real virus for the Mac OS X platform,”. Sophos also goes on to explain that this IS a virus and not a trojan:

A Trojan horse is a seemingly legitimate computer program that has been intentionally designed to disrupt and damage computer activity. Importantly, Trojan horses do not replicate or have any mechanism of spreading themselves. They have to be deliberately planted on a website, or accidentally shared with another user, or spammed out to email addresses. There is nothing inside a Trojan’s code to distribute themselves further to other victims.

Interestingly enough Macworld claims it is not a virus, but malware:

“Leap-A is not a virus, it is malicious software that requires a user to download the application and execute the resulting file,” said Apple. “Apple always advises Macintosh users to only accept files from vendors and Web sites that they know and trust.

and goes on to say “The only way you can get the Leap-A malware on your machine is if you take some action to put it there yourself.”

About half way down the Macworld article they go into how Leap-A is like a virus, AND like a Trojan, AND like malware. There’s also instructions how to remove “Whatever it is”.

Is this such a mutation that we can’t define if it’s malware, a virus, or a trojan? I’m getting kind of confused here myself. Good thing I run a PC?

Leap-A, OSX, virus, trojan

Categories: Computing, General Interest Tags:
  1. February 18th, 2006 at 23:26 | #1

    leap IS a virus… it’s a type of companion infector… that macworld thinks it’s not a virus is just the last vestiges of the ‘macs are immune to viruses’ falacy that is about to die out…

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