Apple: We are more secure. Hackers: No wai!

Jul 26, 2005
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#1
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/c79b814e-a364-11dc-b229-0000779fd2ac.html?nclick_check=1

Apple’s rising popularity lures hackers

By Kevin Allison in San Francisco

Published: December 5 2007 19:18 | Last updated: December 5 2007 19:18

After years of relative safety, the Apple Mac is becoming an increasingly tempting target for malicious computer hackers, according to a new report published this week.

Security researchers have been aware of the threat to Apple since last year, when they detected the first piece of malicious code – or “malware” – specifically designed to target Apple.

Over the past few months, however, the number of malicious programmes has increased, according to a report published this week by F-Secure, an internet security company.

“Over the past two years, we had found one or two pieces of malware targeting Macs,” said Patrik Runald, an F-Secure security researcher. “Since October, we’ve found 100-150 variants.”

The rising security threat could present a challenge to Apple, which has long touted the security advantages of its platform over those of Microsoft, whose software is a perennial target for hackers.

“As Apple’s platform becomes more visible, it will increasingly come under the gun,” said Roger Kay, an analyst at Endpoint Technologies.

Apple declined to discuss specific steps it was taking to counter the growing number of attacks. However, Apple said: “We take security very seriously and have a great track record for addressing vulnerabilities before they can affect users.”

Mr Runald said the jump in attacks against Apple appeared to be the work of a single gang of professional hackers. The group, known in security circles as the “Zlob gang”, makes programs that infect PCs by tricking users into thinking they are installing software needed to view copyrighted video files.

As with other attacks against Apple, the Zlob gang relies on tricking users to install its malicious software, rather than on exploiting any inherent software vulnerability.

Apple sold 2.1m Macs in the third quarter, up from 1.1m in the first quarter of 2006, according to Gartner, the research group. After years of catering to a niche audience of Mac lovers, Apple now commands about 10 per cent of the consumer PC market, according to Mr Kay.

News of Apple’s growing profile among professional criminals comes as the number of viruses and other malicious computer programmes loose on the internet has doubled over the past 12 months, according to F-Secure.

F-Secure said it had detected 500,000 viruses, trojans and worms in 2007, compared with 250,000 last year.
 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
Apr 22, 2002
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#3
I've been saying it forever. Apple just seems more secure because hackers don't give a shit about Apple when there are far more PC's available. They also have a grudge against Microsoft so they work extra hard to go after Mocrosoft programs. The only secure computer is an offline computer. If they want into your shit they are getting in.
 

Kurto2021

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Nov 28, 2004
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No apple is more secure because they don't allow all applications to have root access.....fundamentally speaking the Mac is more secure.

If a program wants to alter a system file it has to be approved by an administrator of the computer. Most apps are able to be installed by any user but if you want to access a system file a password must be put in.

Vista tried to replicate this but they ask you are you sure about 1,000 times. Eventually the end user is annoyed and just clicks yes. This UAC security in vista is less secure then not popping up a message because the user is bombarded.

Also these supposed hacks are all garbage. The involve the end user doing some really dumb stuff in order for them to be initiated.
 
Mar 15, 2004
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#5
Apple users are hipsters anyway, they're too smug to get a virus on their little colorful comp.
 

Kurto2021

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The core of Mac OS X is BSD Unix, and that OS has been around for two decades in open source form, inspected by all concerned. That's why Mac OS X is more secure than Windows, according to InfoWorld.

For a long time, apologists for Windows have been arguing "security through obscurity." However, if it has a CPU, hackers will try to attack it, and Mac OS X has been a big target for a long time.

"The difference isn't market share, it's the foundation of the operating systems. Given that most virus authors and hackers are in it for the ego, don't you think that there would be a huge incentive to be the first one to write a widespread OS X, Linux, or FreeBSD virus?" Paul Venezia asked.

The key is the foundation of the OS. If the OS is designed on a shaky foundation, everything on top will suffer. When Apple moved its customer based from Classic Mac OS 9 to Mac OS X, they did so consciously with the idea that they needed a firm foundation for the future. But that meant leaving every Classic app behind in the long term.

Microsoft has never been able to make that commitment and retained the backwards compatibility with Win32 apps. That has put a strain on their whole Windows OS. "Simply put, Microsoft had the chance to beat Apple to the punch and make a giant leap back in 1997 or so, killing off the existing Win32 platform in favor of an NT-based client and server that did not have to run legacy applications natively. They didn't, and we are still paying the price for it today. Even if you're not running an MS OS, most of the spam in your mailbox came from zombie Windows systems in the control of spammers," the author noted.

While Microsoft was reaping the rewards of this compatibility, Apple took the time to move its entire customer base to a highly secure BSD Unix OS. "Microsoft didn't. They're faced with massive-scale exploits like the spreading ANI vulnerability, Mr. Venezia concluded. "That affects every Microsoft OS, server and workstation alike, across the board. This gives us a glimpse into the code shared between generations of Microsoft OSes, and it's not a pretty view."
Sums it all up right there
 

Aero 1

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#7
Sums it all up right there
yep but what most fanboys and techies dont take into account is the business side of it. Both companies can give a shit what fanboys want unless it makes them money.

M$ knows that they cant stop backwards compatibility because 90% of the OS market share is theirs and 85% of that is running legacy OS in which people still use their 10 year old programs. Convincing 90% of the home market share that they have to buy all new equipment and software to do the things are already done is not feasible.

Apple in the mac os 9 days with 3% market share had nothing to loose. so they did it, marketed its benefits (see business, not technology) and gained a huge chunk of market share which is now in the 10's i believe.

hackers and spammers go after whats out there the most. now they are seeing the trend in apple, they will exploit it. if linux gaines huge popularity, they will exploit it.
 

Kurto2021

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While I agree with you to some extent I think that if MSFT would force people to upgrade their apps they would. If you used the mac back when they made the transition to OSX they had a mode called classic mode. This would allow you to install both OS9 and OS X at the same time. Whenever a classic app was launched it would launch in a classic environment. Baiscally with MSFT owning virutal PC they probably should have used this technology to do this with Vista.

Microsoft is all about moving products rather than thinking about the customer. If they would have turned off backwards compatibility they could have moved forward much faster. Sure your customers may be upset about having to upgrade their apps but in the long run it would be for their own good.
 

Aero 1

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#9
While I agree with you to some extent I think that if MSFT would force people to upgrade their apps they would. If you used the mac back when they made the transition to OSX they had a mode called classic mode. This would allow you to install both OS9 and OS X at the same time. Whenever a classic app was launched it would launch in a classic environment. Baiscally with MSFT owning virutal PC they probably should have used this technology to do this with Vista.

Microsoft is all about moving products rather than thinking about the customer. If they would have turned off backwards compatibility they could have moved forward much faster. Sure your customers may be upset about having to upgrade their apps but in the long run it would be for their own good.
thats fine for you and me. but will your stubborn grandmother want to spend $1000 to upgrade her computer, install virtual pc and learn how to use virtualization and understand just so she use her Recipe software from 1997? no, i dont think so. consumers dont think about their own good, they think about cost and necessity. if there is no necessity to upgrade, there i no necessity to invest in new technology. and let me tell you, stupid computer user outnumbers the educated computer user much, much more.

you dont get it, they did think of the consumer. thats why they support legacy applications and thats why they still build of win32, and they will always build of win32.

when longhorn was first announced almost 8 years ago now i believe, there big thing was that they were going to get away from the registry and build a whole new OS that doesnt run on DLL's and the registry. tell me this, why didnt that happen?


if it was reversed were apple had the the business and consumer marketshare that M$ enjoys now, do you honestly think they would disable legacy application like they do now?
 

stellarcomics

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Jul 25, 2005
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#10
I've seen articles like this at least once a year for a decade. The message is always the same: Macs are more secure than PCs; will that change when the imac/ipod/iphone/macbook becomes more popular?
It's always the same shit!
Enough already! Hackers will come after us mac users when and if they give a shit. ANY system can be hacked! Fuck!
 

Kurto2021

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Aero my cunt grandma shouldn't update to Vista....nobody is forcing...when the time comes to upgrade her computer she will be dead anyway....oh wait she already is dead.

Point is everyone feels the need to upgrade but a lot of times there is no reason to upgrade

It took Apple from 2001 to the release of Leopard to finally drop classic support. The cost didn't have to $1,000 the virtualization should have been built into the OS until the time comes to remove it from the software. My sons eMac is currently running Panther because I realize the next steps up will ruin his classic support and I have a lot of education games that are OS9 only.

The cost of a PC is $299 for a shitty one and I see no reason why this would change if they would have built in Virtualization. Hell they overcharge for the OS in the first place so this addition would be nothing.
 

Kurto2021

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#12
I've seen articles like this at least once a year for a decade. The message is always the same: Macs are more secure than PCs; will that change when the imac/ipod/iphone/macbook becomes more popular?
It's always the same shit!
Enough already! Hackers will come after us mac users when and if they give a shit. ANY system can be hacked! Fuck!
If Apple has 7% marketshare why aren't 7% of the virus's out there for the Mac. The security through obscurity theory holds no water.
 

Aero 1

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#13
If Apple has 7% marketshare why aren't 7% of the virus's out there for the Mac. The security through obscurity theory holds no water.
did you just ask that question? are you equating the physical number of pc's out there to the number of physical viruses?

so with your logic: the US has roughly 165 million PC's, if mac has 7% of that, that will make about 153 million windows pcs. so there should be 153 million viruses out there that have caused problems?

let me preface this before you continue to get upidity, i own a mac, i prefer it over windows and i administer a huge windows corporate network. THE ONLY REASON windows is attacked is because of its huge presence, and its vulnerability in its legacy architecture. IF EVERYONE IN THE WORLD dumped their computers and got to MS "safest" OS "Vista", I will guarantee you that spam will be reduced by 90% (also if people move away from the flawed SMTP protocol, but thats for another discussion), and virus production would be greatly reduced UNTIL hackers found another or easier thing to exploit.

ill say it agian. if apple had the presence that MS has and their roles are reversed, you would see stupid bill gates in a turtle neck telling people that their product is safer and you would see the pc guy making fun of the apple guy in witty commercials.

P.S. waiting for beemans intellectual comment on this.....
 

Kurto2021

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I am simply arguing against he marketshare issue as being the sole reason that the Mac is not eploited as much as the PC.

The Mac OS was built from the ground up with security as the #1 concern. Windows is a security layer built on a foundation that wasn't secure.

There are millions of macs out there so one would only assume there should be at least a hundered viruses for the Mac and that simply isn't true. The ones that they have claimed to be a virus aren't really a virus and don't replicate.

I know the Mac is not 100% secure but I would say that it is 100 times more secure then Windows....

Let's put it this way...if Mac and Windows had equal marketshare which would have more issues?

A smart user can run XP or Vista without an issue and may never have a problem but when dealing with the average user (dumbasses) that isn't the case. My XP box at home doesn't even have a virus scanning software on it and it has been running for over a year.

In contrast my brothers computer was reinstalled 2 months ago and it is a disaster. My brother is much better off with a Mac but is afraid to make the switch.
 

martianvirus

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Nov 20, 2005
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#16
If windows is so unsecure, why have I never had a virus? SHUTUP ASSCUNTFANBOYS!!!!
 
Mar 15, 2004
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#17
If windows is so unsecure, why have I never had a virus? SHUTUP ASSCUNTFANBOYS!!!!
I am forced to agree, I have had very few problems with Windows when I think of it. Sure, I've had spyware before and when I did I was fucking pissed as hell. But it all comes back to the fact that there are many times more PCs than Apples out there. The people trying to get at us are not going to concentrate on like 5% of the market.

Also, since PC is cheaper and therefore more accesable to users, those new users make more mistakes and open an E-mail with some crazy program in it.

It's really a case of the big dog in the yard getting picked on more than the little guy on the block.
 

Beeman99

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yep but what most fanboys and techies dont take into account is the business side of it. Both companies can give a shit what fanboys want unless it makes them money.

M$ knows that they cant stop backwards compatibility because 90% of the OS market share is theirs and 85% of that is running legacy OS in which people still use their 10 year old programs. Convincing 90% of the home market share that they have to buy all new equipment and software to do the things are already done is not feasible.

Apple in the mac os 9 days with 3% market share had nothing to loose. so they did it, marketed its benefits (see business, not technology) and gained a huge chunk of market share which is now in the 10's i believe.

hackers and spammers go after whats out there the most. now they are seeing the trend in apple, they will exploit it. if linux gaines huge popularity, they will exploit it.

you are so wrong cunt
 

sniper

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#20
It should also be noted that the majority of corporate networks run a windows client/server architecture. Simply, the payload of hacking a corporate network is much more lucrative for a hacker than a Mac server/client in some publishing company.
Also, indeed the market share makes a difference, look at the storm worm, 2 million PCs, a hacker can lease 50-100 of those computers for spam for $1,000+/month. So in essence, it's easier and more worthwhile for a hacker to develop a replicating virus for PCs since it will effect the majority of the market share, rather than slave for months programming the perfect virus for maybe a handful of macs.
 

Kurto2021

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#21
If windows is so unsecure, why have I never had a virus? SHUTUP ASSCUNTFANBOYS!!!!
You may have never had a virus but that is because you are not a complete boob. You are actually in the minority with windows users.

No OS X users have ever had a virus.
 
May 7, 2003
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#22
It should also be noted that the majority of corporate networks run a windows client/server architecture. Simply, the payload of hacking a corporate network is much more lucrative for a hacker than a Mac server/client in some publishing company.
Also, indeed the market share makes a difference, look at the storm worm, 2 million PCs, a hacker can lease 50-100 of those computers for spam for $1,000+/month. So in essence, it's easier and more worthwhile for a hacker to develop a replicating virus for PCs since it will effect the majority of the market share, rather than slave for months programming the perfect virus for maybe a handful of macs.
Conclusion: Mac's are better MV;)
 

Kurto2021

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#23
It should also be noted that the majority of corporate networks run a windows client/server architecture. Simply, the payload of hacking a corporate network is much more lucrative for a hacker than a Mac server/client in some publishing company.
Also, indeed the market share makes a difference, look at the storm worm, 2 million PCs, a hacker can lease 50-100 of those computers for spam for $1,000+/month. So in essence, it's easier and more worthwhile for a hacker to develop a replicating virus for PCs since it will effect the majority of the market share, rather than slave for months programming the perfect virus for maybe a handful of macs.
You act like there are only 5 Macs in the world.
 

sniper

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#24
You act like there are only 5 Macs in the world.
I was comparatively speaking in regards to the corporate IT world and the payoff. Don't make it look like I'm picking a side, because frankly I don't give a shit about the flame war in this thread.
 

Kurto2021

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#25
surprisingly I don't care that much either.....I was just wondering why I even started posting on this