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Homeland Security Recommends Removing QuickTime from Windows PCs

quicktime

 

Homeland Security has issued a bulletin recommending that QuickTime be removed from Windows PCs. QuickTime has been confirmed to have critical security vulnerabilities, which Apple has made clear will not be fixed as they are dropping support for QuickTime.

Not sure if you have QuickTime installed? If  you’ve installed iTunes, you probably do, as QuickTime was often bundled with iTunes installations and updates. An example of the logo is above.

Because of the high profile of this security vulnerability and the lack of support for the product, I would suggest you do go ahead and uninstall QuickTime. You can do this through Add/Remove programs; and as usual, if you have any questions or problems removing it please let me know, and I will be happy to assist

*** Update ***

There is one caveat for folks who use Adobe’s Creative Cloud products to edit videos: apparently, there are apparently some codecs that remain dependent on QuickTime being installed. If you are using Creative Cloud to edit videos, this may be an important consideration. You may want to consider the pros and cons of removing it if this is your situation, or do your design work on a Mac for the time being.

A more detailed and in-depth discussion of the vulnerabilities and consequences can be found here if you are interested.

Posted in: Apple, Malware, Security, Tech Tips for Business Owners

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Macs Infected with Ransomware KeRanger

Macs Infected with Ransomware KeRanger

For the first time, Apple confirmed over the weekend that Macs have been infected with a variant of one of the pernicious ransomware viruses out there. It appears that it came in through an infected copy of “Transmission,” a program that is used to transfer data on the BitTorrent peer-t0-peer file sharing network.

This has been a long time coming and it should raise a flag for Mac users who have previously not felt they had much to worry about. While (this time) it only affects a specific sub-set of users this time, it proves that this type of ransomware can infect Macs.  And since it truly does encrypt files, without a backup the only options are to pay the ransom or lose your files.

The same rules apply to Mac users as all the PC users out there – offsite backups are the way to go. You should always have an offsite backup, ideally one that you rotate throughout the week, to ensure that if you are infected you can roll back to previous versions of your files.

Additional details here and here if you are interested in further reading.

As always, feel free to call if you have questions.

Posted in: Apple, Malware, Tech Tips for Business Owners

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