A Trojan horse that exploits a vulnerability in Apple Mac OS X has appeared, security experts have warned.
Although the Mac platform has been far less vulnerable to security threats than Windows, security firm Symantec has warned in the past that the Mac OS operating system is increasingly prone to security exploits.
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The OSX.Exploit.Launchd Trojan exploits the vulnerability to give attackers root access to Macintosh OS X version 10.4.6 or earlier. It opens a shell with full root privileges that an attacker can control.
In an advisory notice, Symantec described the threat from the exploit as “low”, and containment as “easy”.
The vulnerability – which could allow denial of service attacks – was patched by Apple last week in its Mac OS X 10.4.7 update, which also includes operating system improvements and fixes to minor problems in the Mail, Finder and iChat applications.
Mac OS version 10.5, codenamed Leopard, is set to be launched in August.