Can Apple Keep the Worms Out?

"In the wake of the MyDoom/NovaRG fiasco, every Mac columnist has an easy out. After yet another virus attack has hammered the Windows world, the automatic response has been to pen the standard Mac gloat. It goes something like this: I didn't get this virus because I have a Mac. In fact, I never get viruses. Never have, never will. That's because Mac software is simply better than Windows software. So there....

The game changed for Apple when it upgraded from OS 9's fairly unique operating system to the Unix-based OS X. That meant any attack aimed at Unix machines could affect Macs. And plenty of virus and worm attacks have been aimed at Unix.

In short, now that Apple has Unix under the hood, Steve Jobs can't rely on security through obscurity. The argument that Apple is safer because of its marginal place in computing's cosmos no longer applies. With its embrace of Unix, Apple has joined a big family -- and it keeps growing, thanks to Linux and other open-source versions of Unix."


[Lockergnome's Technology News]

Written on February 9, 2004