Yesterday we reported (admittedly rather jubilantly) that Apple has suggested users bite the bullet and invest in some antivirus software. It later emerged that the posting was old (originally posted about a year ago)...
"The Mac is designed with built-in technologies that provide protection against malicious software and security threats right out of the box," Evans said. "However, since no system can be 100 percent immune from every threat, running antivirus software may offer additional protection," he added.
What is bullcrap exactly? That OSX has security built in? It actually has a far less intrusive but very effective system of stopping unauthorised programs running, i.e. what UAC should have been.
Or are you saying that it is bullcrap that running antivirus software may offer additional protection?
I don't understand what you are bullcrapping about.
Either way, an PC with no extra protection is far more likely to be infected than a mac without it. Sure it is in a large part due to market share, but it doesn't make it any less true.
I'm willing to bet that OSX is actually less secure than Windows. Windows has millions of attacks placed against it, and Microsoft has learned some hard lessons on how to program. Windows is a battle-hardened, beaten-up OS. OSX doesn't have that experience; not because it's superior, but because it's less popular. Gradually, as it becomes more mainstream, OSX will feel the pain of the wild and it won't be so shiny anymore.
And I'm finally building my uncle a new machine to replace his 6 year old laptop. It has its original copy of XP installed. Never crashed, never infected, never compromised (at least, from my views of it). PC's don't need protection, they need smart users; which macs generally lack. (as well as PCs, but there are far less mac enthusiasts)
And the myth of security by market-share lives on...
Mac isn't more secure because of the smaller market share. It's more secure because it actually is harder to infect. Pretty much goes for most *nix systems. They're more secure because they're built to be secure.
The need for an AV (for Mac) would mostly make sense IF the AV also provides protection against malware. Viruses (by old definition) requires altering (attaching itself to) executables, while malware does not need to.
The problem w/ Macs w/o malware protection is that, even though Mac has proven very resistant to system infection, it does not mean that 3rd party apps also are. Even if the infection of a 3rd party app is non-persistent (does not survive a restart), it is enough to steal information. Bank accounts, passwords, social security numbers, etc. are all accessible EXCEPT if they are accessed/stored by another user account NOT accessible by the security level/content the 3rd party apps are running under. Good luck with juggling user accounts, user information, and 3rd party apps.
It is true that market-share doesn't make a system less secure, but it does increase the level/intensity of scrutiny a system will undergo. MORE IMPORTANTLY it will expose more users due to vulnerable 3rd party apps (which are almost all). Not Apple's/Mac's fault, but by equating Mac security w/ 3rd party app security and uncompromised system (Mac) w/ no data will be stolen is just plain STUPID.
personally i think that the people at apple are becoming greedy just like microsoft and will start making crap software. for example look at the 64bit version of itunes. it does not work at all no matter what you try to do.
Actually, market share based viruses and malware is a completly valid argument.
Sure, there is the occasional virus that is just there to cause widespread havoc, but alot of viruses and malware are aimed to gaining control of the target computer to convert it into a zombie and create botnets. That is why spam is so hard to get rid of, there is no centralized server spamming the entire internet, it is a botnet that can be commanded to spam, perform ddos attacks or just sit by until activated without the end user knowing anything about it.
From a business standpoint, it is way more cost effective to develop a virus that will target 80% of the consumer computers.
Yes, *nix systems are usually less prone to viruses and attacks, but that is usually because *nix systems are used as server platforms, where users only use a few services such as ftp, ssh, virtual machines, web servers, etc. Each of these services could be potentially exploited, but on the server side, there is no user downloading from limewire, torrents, or shady web pages.
Put a power luser behind a *nix system, and he will grant root access to just about anything because he doesn't know any better and voila! You have a new backdoor, trojan, virus or spyware installed.