January 5, 2007


Filed under: Technical posts — Tony Bridge @ 7:47 am

Kia ora tatou:

A trip-and stumble moment.

After years of teaching IT and related skills, I tripped up over a myth, namely that Macs don’t get viruses/worms/nasties.

They do. Oh, boy, they do.

About 2 days ago, I started getting return/undeliverable messages from places I had never even heard of and websites I didn’t know existed. By yesterday the trickle had become a flood, and I was starting to get suspicious ( I am a slow learner!) Now, working on the myth that Macs don’t get this sort of stuff, I hadn’t to date installed any antivirus software ( there isn’t much for the Mac anyway). But it was fairly obvious what was happening, so I went on the Net and did some research.

In the end I found a product called ClamXav, which I duly installed . I then ran a full scan and discovered to my horror….Mytob_IV and the Sober worms….. They have since been dealt with!

I guess the point of all this is the need to be ever-vigilant, no matter what your platform. This means :

  1. Using good-quality antivirus software ( especially necessary for Windows users). I am told AVG and Avast are both good (and free) and don’t clog up your system; Panda and Norton, in my experience are guaranteed to put the brakes on your system. I am currently using NOD32-fast and efficient (but you have to pay for it).
  2. Updating the definitions at least once a week, preferably daily.
  3. Running a full scan of your system at least once a month.

So there you have it(or rather, there I had it). Can’t wait to get back to my Windows machine. At least it is protected (I think).

Stop sniggering, Volker.

Ka kite ano


I got back to Ranfurly yesterday and, following my experience witht the Mac, ran a full scan with NOD32 through my PC. I didn’t expect to find anything, since I have been using Panda antivirus for some 18 months now, and I scan weekly and update daily. Imagine my horror when it found 2 infected files that have been in my system for some 6 months! If you really want to know, it was the Win32/Randon.AY worm – now deleted.

Again the message- be careful and use good-quality antivirus software.




  1. Tony – One of the several reasons I prefer Macs is because they’ve seemed immune from viruses. However, I’ve always thought it was probably just going to be a matter of time. Thanks for the warning – will pass it on to other Mac users.

    Comment by Lesley — January 5, 2007 @ 8:35 am

  2. Hi Tony
    Bad luck but at least you are knowledgeable enough to fixed it wihtout needing to call in the gurus! Just for information for others, I use Trend Micro PC-Cillin on my Windows based pc as advised by my IT wizard – and touch wood haven’t had a virus since I have been using the internet. Updated frequently at least daily and often more so as now I am on Broaband it automatically advises when there are new footprints.

    Comment by BB — January 5, 2007 @ 8:56 am

  3. Great, thanks for that. I am in love with my Mac! So don’t want any oops stuff.

    Comment by virginia — January 9, 2007 @ 2:29 pm

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