Arik Hesseldahl, a technology writer for, recently posted an article comparing Macs versus PCs. The article is intent on debunking recent advertisements by Microsoft that claim you can get a PC for US$699. I am not here to dispute his claims about the pricing tactics of either platforms. What I am here to try and debunk is his claim that the Mac platform is immune from computer viruses.

For your information, the OSX.Iservice Trojan was discovered in January 2009 roamin freely among pirated copies of Apple application iWork’09 and the Mac version of Adobe Photoshop CS4. Both copies are readily available on popular peer-to-peer bittorrent networks.

The Trojan opens a “back door” allowing the infected computer to start contcating other hosts in its peer-to-peer network.

How to avoid getting infected

Here are a few simple steps:
Step 1: Perform regular virus scans on your computer. Make sure your anti-virus is updated regularly
Step 2: Block Pop-up Windows in your Browser. A lot of viruses and botnets get into you
Step 3: Be discerning when it comes to downloading software from third parties, even people you know. If you don’t need it, don’t install it.
Step 4: Screen your emails especially forwarded emails.
Step 5: Don’t run executable files without running it through an anti-virus utility.

Getting rid of the Mac bug

Instructions on how to remove the iBotnet are starting to become available on the World Wide Web – the same source where the virus came from. 2-spyware has published instructions on how to get rid of the OSX.Iservice Trojan.

Better safe than sorry

If there is any lesson to be learned from this episode is that “download software only from trusted sources.” And for those who still believe that Macs are immune, get real. Your days are numbered!