Macs Less Secure From Hackers And Viruses
Mac users who've been smug for years over how secure their OS is, could be in for a rude awakening if news out of the Black Hat Security Conference is true.
As Macs have slowly gained market share on PCs — 9 percent of the market in the second quarter of 2009 and growing — the interest in hacking them has increased. The advances in security for the computers, however, has not kept pace, experts said at the Black Hat security conference in Vegas.
Despite what Mac users like to think, Dai Zovi, a security researcher and co-author of "The Mac Hacker's Handbook," told Reuters in an interview, "There is no magic fairy dust protecting Macs."
At least three viruses infecting Macs have been identified in the past year, including one that was spread through pirated versions of iWorks and allows the hackers to take control of the Macs once they're infected. And Zovi demonstrated one "technique" that allows a hacker to take control of a computer's Safari browser if the computer's already been infected.
Apple is improving security measures, some said, but perhaps not fast enough.
"They are advancing. Our concern is that they are just not advancing as fast as they are gaining market share," Charlie Miller, co-author of "The Mac Hacker's Handbook," told Reuters.