Researchers: Apple iPhones, iPads connected to Windows PCs are at risk

“Attackers could compromise iPads and iPhones on a large scale through the infected computers that make up botnets, researchers say,” Tim Greene reports for NetworkWorld.

“Nearly a quarter of zombie computers that make up certain known botnets eventually connect with Apple iOS devices, making these phones and tablets vulnerable to infection from malicious applications,” Greene reports, “a team from Georgia Institute of Technology said last week at the 23rd USENIX Security Symposium.”

Greene reports, “Attackers would install malicious applications on the iOS devices when they connect to infected PCs via USB cable or Wi-Fi, says the team led by Tielei Wang. The apps would steal passwords and other personal information.”

Much more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Windows PCs are modern-day Typhoid Marys.

20 Comments

      1. If I plugged my iPhone into iTunes on an infected PC to do a backup, I think I’d notice it spontaneously rebooting to perform a jailbreak firmware update, so a bad thing, but also kind of obvious if it happens, so not much risk of it ever doing anything nefarious after the backup.

          1. You have to do more than trust it, you have to follow a very specific set of instructions on your iPhone… Which is why we haven’t seen this happening.

  1. Does this include Macs that have Windows &/VM Fusion or Parallels ?
    Like most Mac users I hate to run Windows but there is the odd bit of proprietary software that won’t run on Macs

    1. Hmm. Potentially yes.

      You can of course set up VMWare and Parallels to NOT share data between the Windows VM and Mac OS.

      I can’t imagine why you’d sync an iOS device on iTunes via a Windows VM. But it could happen. It’s certainly possible to bot a VM, which of course would only do nasty bot stuff while the VM was running.

      Other thoughts?

  2. This type of FUD is why Apple only has 6% marketshare. Apple Inc. The modern day Trojan Horse of tech. Self righteous disciples will all fall the day OSX becomes relevant enough for hackers to attack it like there is no tomorrow.

    1. So, 120 million Macs in the wild is not a big enough target.

      Cut the bullshit, you know 120 million Macs is a big target.

      Maybe it is because the Mac is hard to hack and Windows is a sieve that any kid, in their parent’s basement, can crack.

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