Mac OS X is a series of Unix-based graphical interface operating systems developed, marketed, and sold by Apple Inc.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

58
votes
7answers
6k views

Can “cat-ing” a file be a potential security risk?

I often use cat on the console to view the contents of files, and every now and then I accidentally cat a binary file which basically produces gibberish and system beeps. However today I've ...
50
votes
8answers
13k views

Should I get an antivirus for my Mac?

There are some people saying that people should use an antivirus software on Mac. And there are thousands of people claiming that Macs don't get viruses (under this term I mean spyware / malware as ...
49
votes
6answers
10k views

Am I at risk if I let someone charge their Android phone from my MacBook through a micro USB cable?

Someone connected their Android phone to my MacBook and it made me think if this has put my MacBook at risk. It was for 3 seconds and I was in control of the MacBook the whole time.
47
votes
4answers
9k views

Isn't OS X's Single-User Mode a bad idea?

Recently, I had a Mac which fried its video logic board. Luckily, Apple had concluded that this was a design flaw and was fixing the affected models for free (see more here). However, I did not find ...
45
votes
5answers
49k views

What can an attacker do with Bluetooth and how should it be mitigated?

What are the security risks of Bluetooth and what technologies and best practices should be used to protect my device? What can an attacker do once a malicious device is paired with mine? ...
42
votes
1answer
4k views

Why is Firewire a bigger threat than USB?

This question notes that a person briefly connected an Android device to an Apple computer via USB, and one comment indicates that it would "quite possibly" be a risk: In theory, yes, in practice, ...
41
votes
3answers
23k views

Are ordinary OS X desktops at risk from bash “shellshock” bug (CVE-2014-6271)?

I've recently heard via Twitter about CVE-2014-6271. Are ordinary OS X desktops, that aren't acting as a web server, at risks of receiving attacks that could exploit this vulnerability?
23
votes
1answer
9k views

Mac OS X from an IT Security Practitioners' Perspective? [closed]

What does the Mac OS X offer that it has been recently attracting users with IT security focus? There are sites that specifically focus on "hacking" with OSX, such as machacking.net. Defcon has an ...
22
votes
7answers
5k views

Convenient cross-platform help on checking secure hashes like SHA-256

It is often helpful to be able to obtain a good cryptographic checksum of a file, e.g. the SHA-256 hash. This can be used to verify file integrity, so long as you have a reliable source for the hash. ...
19
votes
6answers
5k views

How can I protect my computer from my potentially malicious colleagues?

So, I work in this small company (10 people) where we do stuff in programming, for various platforms. I started recently working there (2 months) right after I graduated. My work is not exactly ...
19
votes
1answer
9k views

How secure is “Secure Keyboard Entry” in Mac OS X's Terminal?

I've been using Terminal under Mac OS X for years but somehow missed to spot this feature: I'm now wondering how does this actually work, and is it 100% safe? If it isn't, what technique could be ...
18
votes
1answer
756 views

Keyboard firmware hack - Linux vulnerable?

I see that Apple patched OS X to mitigate against K. Chen's famous Apple keyboard firmware hack. However: Apple keyboards can be used with computers running other operating systems; and in any case,...
16
votes
6answers
14k views

How secure is FileVault 2 while the computer is in sleep mode?

How secure is Apples disk encryption FileVault 2 when someone has physical or network access while the computer in sleep mode or is running a screen saver? Are there ways to circumvent FileVault 2 ...
16
votes
3answers
5k views

Running windows in virtual machine, should I bother with security?

I'm running Windows in a virtual machine on my mac (via Parallels). Should I bother installing antivirus, firewall and using other conventional wisdom practices (like don't open unknown .exe etc)? I ...
14
votes
1answer
4k views

Does the GHOST vulnerability affect Macs?

Although the vulnerability targets Linux, I have read that it is really a glibc vulnerability, and some sites suggest that one should install a fix on any platform. I know that there are a lot of ...
14
votes
2answers
7k views

Is Apple's push notification service implementation vulnerable to a MitM attack

Recently(more info) I've spotted a strange message in the logs on my quite recent, fresh installation of OS X Mavericks 10.9.2 Apr 27 15:26:47 Ivans-MacBook-Pro.local apsd[194]: Unrecognized leaf ...
12
votes
1answer
509 views

What is going on with my download of the recent Apple security update?

The update in question is the Mavericks combined update which, among other things, claims to fix the recent SSL vulnerability/gaping hole. This issue really annoyed me, so I decided to procure Apple'...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

What firewall settings on a Macintosh are the most restrictive, while still permitting casual internet use?

I don't want this to be subjective, so I'll try to make the requirements as clear as possible. On a Mac with Snow Leopard, how can I set up the firewall rulesets that allow ONLY: Using the internet ...
10
votes
3answers
801 views

Reading keystrokes of other applications

Is it possible for other application running in the OS to read the keystrokes that my application uses? What about mouse events and window handles? Is there any security wall that the OS uses to ...
10
votes
2answers
3k views

Rootkits on Mac OS X

Is there known existence of rootkits for Mac OS X, and can you please provide examples? What software would you recommend to detect rootkits on OS/X? From a software developer's perspective, can you ...
10
votes
3answers
52k views

How do I detect malware on Mac OS X?

I have a computer running OS X, and I want to know if there's malware (e.g. a keylogger, or something that lets an attacker control my computer, or something that stops me from installing whatever I ...
9
votes
2answers
716 views

How does the DYLD privilege escalation vulnerability work on OS X?

Just reading about the DYLD privilege escalation vulnerability reported by Stefan Esser at https://www.sektioneins.de/en/blog/15-07-07-dyld_print_to_file_lpe.html I understand this allows anyone to ...
8
votes
3answers
521 views

Secure cleaning of deleted files

So I know how to secure delete files. But at our company, we have a laptop which had many important documents, which now have been deleted, but not in a secure way. We can't perform a full format of ...
8
votes
1answer
581 views

How can I secure my log files?

I have a cool tool that displays my syslog and kernellog on my mac's desktop. This has me concerned about what is written in them - I'm staring to feel like they are creating a hole in my privacy. I ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

What FDE (with hardware encrypted drives) for OS X works?

I'm trying to get all of our laptops doing FDE (as I'm sure lots of you are), and I've run into a problematic spot. Our Windows and Linux laptops are Dells, and they have some good BIOS integration ...
8
votes
1answer
205 views

How to check if iCloud password popup is legitimate?

I was away from the computer when this popup appeared and I've no idea what triggered it. How do I know if it's legitimate popup from App Store or a phishing attempt by some malware? Back in my ...
7
votes
4answers
684 views

Security of different OS

At my work we are given a computer to set up at home so if we ever feel like working from home we can do so. The thing is that whenever it comes to developing for java I always prefer using windows or ...
7
votes
4answers
3k views

Why are Macs more secure? [closed]

People often say that Macs are more secure than say Windows. Which is why many Mac users don't have antiviruses. But why is this? Is it because of the need for a password for sudo commands, like ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Who (which process) is calling curl?

On my mac (Lion), I know that curl is bing used by some unknown process to communicate with a server. Basically I installed little Snitch and find out that "somebody" is using curl periodically. ...
7
votes
2answers
550 views

Using FileVault on a Mac with existing data

I have recently got a Mac which I have started using already without any encryption while looking for the best solution. I have come to the conclusion that using Mac's own file encryption technology ...
7
votes
3answers
11k views

Is it possible for a phishing link to install a major virus on a Mac?

My girlfriend recently had her university MS Exchange account hacked. The attacker took over her email account and started using it to send thousands of spam emails. After a while, her email account ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Verify Mac firmware is not hacked…how to do?

I have a late model Mac computer. I allowed someone to plug in a USB drive, and my network activity changed afterwards. Normally, Little Snitch will report every app that uses the internet. Every ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Can the FBI or government agencies decrypt my hardrive and/or force me to give them the password?

I have seen other TrueCrypt questions as well "Windows encryption with BitLocker" and "Mac OSX encryption with FileVault". Does the FBI/NSA or other government agencies have access to my data or can ...
7
votes
3answers
9k views

How to patch Bash on OSX in wake of “shellshock”? [duplicate]

My Mac is vulnerable, as this test shows: x='() { :;}; echo VULNERABLE' bash -c : (source) I am using the version of bash that came with it. I also use Homebrew. What is the preferred way to patch ...
7
votes
1answer
6k views

Guest user on Mac Book Pro is suddenly on. Was I hacked?

Today I restarted my Mac book Pro and the guest user was on when has always been off before.
7
votes
2answers
6k views

Need help identifying the OSX process that's generating strange network traffic

Since the past few days, I noticed that my router was a bit slow, and was restarting by itself at times. When looked at it's logs, they had entries like: Friday Jul 13 13:09:02 2012 1 Blocked by DoS ...
7
votes
1answer
816 views

OSX HomeBrew Security Risks

I've been trying to harden my OSX 10.11 computer and one of the guides suggested installing Homebrew to get updates to things such as OpenSSL. While updates are great, it seems like Apple should be ...
7
votes
1answer
352 views

How can CVE-2016-2324 and -2315 be mitigated on Mac OS X?

The recent git remote execution vulnerability states all git clients with version <2.7.1 are vulnerable and that most linux distributions have included the fixes already. However, as of today, $...
7
votes
1answer
222 views

Encrypting individual files on OS X

I am about to go paperless, and I want to protect the documents that I scan. The use case is that I'll be scanning paper documents, encrypting each file, and storing them locally and on various backup ...
7
votes
2answers
947 views

Mac OSX: What is the safest way to access an unknown USB storage?

Let's say a friend gives me a SD-card which I'm not sure is safe (i.e. it may contain malware), what is the safest way to access this card on a Mac OSX? E.g. Is it possible to create a sandbox in ...
7
votes
3answers
372 views

How secure is OS X's Keychain access control?

On OS X, when an application requests access to a Keychain item, the user is prompted whether to grant or deny that access. Supposedly, the system saves not only the binary path, but also its hash in ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Why did Apple think OS/X was virus proof?

In such articles as this one at Examiner.com, we see that Apple had long "advertised" the immunity of its desktop OS to viruses. It had to dilute that assertion when the Flashback virus appeared. ...
6
votes
4answers
557 views

What do you do to protect data on a Macbook in the event of theft/loss of the device?

What setup do you recommend to protect data on a MacBook in the event of theft/loss of the device? I'm specifically interested in Macs here, rather than laptops generally, and in concrete ...
6
votes
7answers
3k views

Safe to connect to external drive?

A customer provided an external drive (USB 2.0 and Firewire 800 connections), and wants me to copy files onto the drive. The drive is not new. I have no particular reason to suspect the customer ...
6
votes
5answers
261 views

VPN with client certificate via managed PKI - where did private key come from?

$company allows Mac users to request a client certificate via Symantec PKI to connect to their SSL VPN server. This process involves going to a specific Symantec website (has some sort of ID to ...
6
votes
2answers
3k views

How Do I Troubleshoot a Browser Hijack on a Mac?

My Mac is getting weird redirects with Safari and Chrome, however not with Mozilla Firefox. Since I cannot find software to do malware removal on Apple products or any good information, I am at a loss ...
6
votes
0answers
965 views

Why does DestroyFVKeyOnStandby no longer work to secure Mavericks? [closed]

I noticed that using the DestroyFVKeyOnStandby option for FileVault 2 in terminal no longer works since upgrading to Mavericks. Usually you type the following in terminal: sudo pmset -a ...
5
votes
4answers
457 views

Can you really change the password to a mac on reboot without knowing the old one?

I was looking for answers for a configuration issue on my laptop but then I got to reading the answers to this post. There was one that troubled me slightly (the last one by Lauri) which says how to ...
5
votes
1answer
228 views

xml library vulnerabilities, regarding post-exploitation

there was some arbitrary code execution that occurred on my os x 10.5 system. this came as a result of opening an xls file with excel for mac. the vnc type program that came with office for mac was ...
5
votes
2answers
439 views

Questions on true anonymity

I am going to use Tails to connect to Tor through VPN which has AES-256 data encryption, SHA-256 data authentication and RSA-4096 handshake encryption on my Mac on my school's WiFi (as public as I can ...