Given that Windows is more widely used compared to Mac, it would obviously benefit hackers and scammers to create malware designed to target Windows computers instead of Mac, but this doesn’t mean that Macs are completely safe. In fact, recently, researchers have discovered a mysterious strain of malware on at least 30,000 Mac computers.
What’s odd about this malware, called Silver Sparrow, is that at the moment, the current goal of the malware and its payload remain a mystery. Based on what researchers at Malwarebytes and Red Canary have discovered so far, the Macs that are infected connect to a control server once every hour to check for new commands, but other than that, it does nothing.
There also seems to be a self-destruct feature built into it, presumably to help hackers cover their tracks, but to date, it has yet to be used .While it sounds like no big deal, the fact that it seemingly does nothing has researchers worried about its goal, and if there could be something bigger and more nefarious planned for the future that we aren’t seeing yet.
Thankfully, given that the malware has since been discovered, it has allowed Apple to revoke the binaries used by the malware which means that it should prevent users from accidentally installing it themselves. The malware has also been found to target both the Intel and M1 variants of Apple’s Mac computers, so clearly there is more work that needs to be done on the M-series chipsets to help keep them as secure as possible.