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7631Re: [wpmac] [OT] The sad state of anti-virus protection

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  • Randy B. Singer
    Jan 8, 2013
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      On Jan 8, 2013, at 7:11 PM, John Kaufmann wrote:

      > Ever? Was there ever malware for the pre-OSX "classic" Mac OS? [I'm not
      > suggesting it was a better OS - there are many things that OSX does better
      > - just that security was not an obvious motivation for the switch.]

      When I said that the Macintosh is now more secure than it has ever been, I meant that OS X has been continually made more secure. As of Lion there were major improvements made with regard to security.

      Note that "improvements in security" doesn't mean that here are more threats around, or more severe threats. It just means that Apple has been pro-active.

      To directly answer your question though, yes, there was malware for the classic OS (OS 9 and earlier). At least 27 examples by my count:

      See:
      http://www.faqs.org/faqs/computer-virus/macintosh-faq/
      Section 7

      In fact, the fact that there were a significant number of viruses for the classic Mac OS is a great piece of evidence to refute the lie that Windows bigots like to spread that OS X doesn't have lots of viruses because it doesn't have a big enough market share. Back in the days of the classic OS the Mac had a much smaller market share than it does now, yet there was no lack of malware (but nothing like what existed for the PC). So it clearly isn't the case that virus-writing sociopaths are only interested in writing malware for a platform with a certain level of market penetration. The reason the Mac has so many fewer pieces of malware than Windows is, and always has been, that it is much harder to write malware for the Mac.

      Have a look at these fun articles:

      Broken Windows
      http://daringfireball.net/2004/06/broken_windows

      So Witty (followup to Broken Windows)
      http://daringfireball.net/2004/06/so_witty

      ___________________________________________
      Randy B. Singer
      Co-author of The Macintosh Bible (4th, 5th, and 6th editions)

      Macintosh OS X Routine Maintenance
      http://www.macattorney.com/ts.html
      ___________________________________________





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