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Apple Promises Fix For ‘Bash’ Bug, Says ‘Vast Majority’ Of Mac Users OK

Why the Bash bug could rival Heartbleed: CNET editor 1:06

Apple is working on a fix for the newly discovered "Bash" bug that could affect Macs, but the company says the "vast majority" of users aren't at risk.

Security researchers at Red Hat uncovered the bug (also known as "Shellshock") on Wednesday. It's found in the Bash shell, software that is used to control the command prompt on many Unix-based operating systems like Linux and Apple's OS X for Mac. Hackers can potentially exploit the bug to launch several types of attacks, and even remotely take complete control of a user's computer.

But Apple said in an emailed statement that most of its users aren't affected, as OS X's "systems are safe by default and not exposed to remote exploits of Bash" -- unless users have actively turned on special, advanced Unix services. Apple is "working to quickly provide a software update" for those advanced users, but the company did not specify a release date. Some experts warned "Bash" could pose a bigger threat than the "Heartbleed" bug that surfaced in April, and the firm Kaspersky Labs reported Friday it has already identified Bash-related attacks.

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--- Julianne Pepitone