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A recent Secunia study indicated that Apple had the most vulnerabilities of the major tech companies  (Source: Secunia)

Apple's Safari browser happily will fill in your personal info to malicious web forms. This glaring flaw can lead to an unacceptable breach of privacy.  (Source: Jeremiah Grossman)
"It just works." -- Apple slogan

Apple is known for its tendency to deny problems with its popular gadgets, making life miserable for customers when such problems occur.  While Apple's iPhone 4 antenna issues are currently stealing the show, there's perhaps no better example overall than Apple's spotty track record on security.

Security research firm Secunia just released a list of vulnerabilities and Apple for the first has come out on top as the most vulnerable.  Secunia warns, "[The] graph is not an indication of the individual vendors’ security, as it is not possible to compare the vendors based on number of vulnerabilities alone."

Apple's supporters were quick to attack the report.  
AppleInsider writes:

Not all vulnerabilities are equal: Secunia outlines five levels of criticality ranging from minor "not critical" issues to "extremely critical" problems that can result in remote exploits without any interaction from the user, and for which active exploits are already known to exist. Yet Secunia's vulnerability report totals throw all these various types of flaws together into sums that are frequently used for meaningless comparison purposes. 

It's ironic that almost simultaneous to the report another significant security flaw in Safari aired.  Safari -- Apple's browser software -- has oft seen releases so buggy to the point that they were unusable.  Safari 5 certainly offered some improvements in that department, but it apparently doesn't fair particularly better in the security department than past releases, including Safari 4 which had a flaw so severe it prompted a Department Homeland Security warning.

While the latest Safari bug isn't as bad an exploit as some go, considering it's not a route to installing malware, it can result in the theft of your personal info.  It all starts with one of Apple's features in Safari -- autofill.  Different from the standard browser's autofill, which remembers users names and passwords for certain sites, Safari has an even more ambitious autofill which maintains info about a user in their address book card and offers up these details when needed.

Unfortunately, Apple didn't appear to realize that it was necessary to screen what it allows to access this data.  Security researchers revealed that a simple web form can grab much of this data -- first name, last name, work place, city, state, and email address -- no questions asked.

Such info could be used in phishing schemes.  It could also be used in blackmail schemes if the users were visiting naughty websites.  Ultimately, it represents a gross threat to privacy that easily surpasses Apple's recent loss of iPad buyers' email addresses (a problem that was largely carrier AT&T's fault).  Apple was informed of the problem on June 17, 2010, but since has done nothing.

The flaw was discovered by Jeremiah Grossman, founder of WhiteHat Security.

Security problems are hardly something new for Apple though.  The iPhone has increasingly been attacked.  One security researcher suggested its security was so poor that it was "useless" to businesses.  Apple has made some improvements with each release of its iPhone OS, but they didn't stop malicious worms from cropping up in the iPhone 3GS generation.

On the computer side, Apple also has had numerous past issues.  Its weak memory protections in its past two operating systems -- Tiger and Snow Leopard -- have spawned a number of successful attacks.  Worse yet Apple's latest OS -- Snow Leopard -- shipped with an outdated vulnerable version of Adobe Flash.

Apple has made some gains -- its new OS does come with mild antivirus protections (though Apple quietly recommends users purchase dedicated AV software).  And the OS does offer working DEP (data execution prevention), though it ships with a virtually broken address space layout randomization (ASLR) implementation (which rival Microsoft's Windows 7 flawlessly implements).

Ultimately, though what is really killing Apple is its slow patch time.  Apple's "there is no problem" mentality has made it the slowest company at patching, according to recent surveys.  It took it a year to finally last year (June) patch a major Java hole.  Unfortunately, such performance is more the rule than the exception to it.



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Yes we know
By Ristogod on 7/23/2010 9:48:24 AM , Rating: 5
For most of us tech savvy, all this about Apple was already known to us. It's nice to see articles finally talking about what has already seemed so apparent however. Hopefully people can become more aware of Apple's shady tactics and see through the impression they are trying convey to everyone and instead see the truth. Denying and ignoring issues is no way to run a business.




RE: Yes we know
By Redwin on 7/23/2010 10:30:37 AM , Rating: 5
I wonder if Apple misses the good old days when nobody knew their products were vulnerable because not enough people used them to make it worth the hackers' trouble.

Security through obscurity is less and less viable when you get to be the largest technology company in the world by market cap.


RE: Yes we know
By dragonbif on 7/23/2010 11:27:57 AM , Rating: 5
You are holding your browser wrong!


RE: Yes we know
By Dorkyman on 7/23/2010 11:44:36 AM , Rating: 2
Dang! That's what I was going to say!

Also, be careful, Jason. Articles like this one will REALLY piss off You-Know-Who.


RE: Yes we know
By Pirks on 7/23/10, Rating: -1
RE: Yes we know
By JonnyBlaze on 7/23/2010 5:00:02 PM , Rating: 5
It's not his fault Apple removed the link.

You can find other sites posting about it back when it was live.

http://news.softpedia.com/news/Apple-Admits-Virus-...

http://www.informationweek.com/news/hardware/mac/s...

Apple didn't want all that attention I guess.


RE: Yes we know
By Pirks on 7/23/10, Rating: -1
RE: Yes we know
By borismkv on 7/23/2010 7:56:30 PM , Rating: 2
Backpedal some more, Pirks. The article was posted and notes *Mac* versions of AntiVirus software for OSX 10.5, so it's at least as recent as that. So
quote:
Apple probably meant catching Windows virii, not OS X ones since those for OS X still are virtually non-existent.
is wrong. And an Apple Marketing flunky is blowing smoke with this statement:
quote:
We have removed the KnowledgeBase article because it was old and inaccurate
and it's inaccurate, not because Apples need no additional protection, but because having "multiple antivirus utilities" will *break everything*.


RE: Yes we know
By Pirks on 7/26/10, Rating: -1
RE: Yes we know
By damianrobertjones on 7/25/2010 3:44:14 PM , Rating: 1
RE: Yes we know
By Pirks on 7/26/10, Rating: -1
RE: Yes we know
By croc on 7/23/2010 8:58:50 PM , Rating: 3
Pirks must be using Safari.... Link works just fine in Opera, Explorer, FF.... Gee, Pirks, maybe YOU should do a bit of testing before you go off on a wild, flaming, tangent. I'd say more, but I am trying to be polite.


RE: Yes we know
By chick0n on 7/23/2010 11:18:08 PM , Rating: 2
You wanna talk crap about Mac? Come on its PIRKS the Jerk ! He is about the same as reader1 !


RE: Yes we know
By Pirks on 7/26/10, Rating: 0
RE: Yes we know
By drycrust3 on 7/23/2010 4:52:14 PM , Rating: 3
Huh? Am I going the way of Van Gogh? Everything is yellow.


RE: Yes we know
By Treckin on 7/24/2010 12:43:54 AM , Rating: 3
Give this man a 6 for Khrists sake


RE: Yes we know
By FoxFour on 7/23/2010 2:29:12 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Denying and ignoring issues is no way to run a business.


It is, however, an excellent way to run a government . Hmmm...

*conspiratorial glance from side to side*


RE: Yes we know
By B3an on 7/23/2010 4:36:17 PM , Rating: 3
I'd argue it's clearly a good way to run a business actually. Look at how well Apple do even with all the lying, denying, suing, dirty tactics and so on. And still growing.

The problem is how retarded and sheepish people are just as much as Apple themself.


RE: Yes we know
By qkool on 7/23/2010 6:33:43 PM , Rating: 2
It's the best way to run a company while you're running it. It's the worse way for anyone not making money off of the company.


RE: Yes we know
By TomZ on 7/23/2010 3:50:46 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Denying and ignoring issues is no way to run a business.
Obviously you missed the news the other day of their record-breaking quarterly report.

Maybe it is the way to run a business after all!


RE: Yes we know
By mstrmac on 7/25/10, Rating: -1
RE: Yes we know
By dark matter on 7/25/2010 9:53:03 AM , Rating: 3
Nice dialogue, doesn't excuse Apple though.


Apple has no clue how to make anything secure.
By Motoman on 7/23/2010 10:45:55 AM , Rating: 5
...and why would they? They've persisted to this point on the "security by obscurity" program...they never had to worry about how secure their products were, because no one would bother to attack an insignificant player like them.

But now that people are scrutinizing their products (despite the fact that, at ~4% of the computer market, they're still an insignificant player), it's obvious that they have no clue what they're doing.

In the end, it will make no difference. Macolytes will continue to buy and use Apple products no matter what - people with brains in their heads will just look at the Macolytes and wonder what the eff they are thinking.




By mircea on 7/23/2010 11:08:18 AM , Rating: 3
With time they might loose all these loyal buyers, if people can so easily get their data stolen which can result in stolen bank account info and then stolen money.

How can they afford a Mac when their wallets are emptied by Mac figuratively AND literally.


RE: Apple has no clue how to make anything secure.
By mstrmac on 7/25/2010 1:56:04 AM , Rating: 1
With the latest iterations of OS X, Apple has introduced many initiatives to prevent security issues. One of the most interesting is known as address space layout randomization (ASLR) which is more commonly known as memory randomization. ASLR is important because it makes one of the most common security issues, the buffer overflow, almost impossible to exploit.

For those of you who don’t understand it, think of it this way. Imagine the memory of your computer like a map of your hometown. Some vandal wants to change some of the street names to mess with your map. In order for him to do that, he needs to know the exact longitude and latitude of those streets. It’s easy for him because he can buy a map of your hometown and get that same information.

The latest version of OS X chops that map up into little squares and randomly rearranges them, but is also smart enough to know how to continue reading the map unhindered by the confusing rearrangement. Nobody is able to buy a map arranged exactly like that so nobody can get the exact information they need to vandalize your map. It doesn’t mean they can’t. They just can’t quite zero in on exact targets anymore.
On top of that, OS X also offers tagged downloading of applications (a system that watches very closely what gets downloaded and run on your computer and alerts the user before it runs for the first time), stronger forms of built-in encryption, more robust firewall features that watch for malware-like activity and application sandboxing to prevent hackers from targeting program-specific vulnerabilities.

Now, I’m not naive. I have no doubt that OS X will eventually have security issues that result in some kind of malware. No system is perfect and no amount of operating system cheerleading will change that. Someday, we’ll see the first OS X virus. However, I’m confident that these problems will never approach anything like what we’ve seen on Windows, and there’s little reason to think Apple’s gradually increasing market share will change that.

What’s funny about the market share argument too is that it really doesn’t even apply to the Mac to begin with as it assumes the Mac is a platform unto itself. That was true in the old days, but the Mac doesn’t run OS 9 anymore. It’s OS X, and OS X is, underneath the pretty user interface, Unix. There are lots and lots of Unix (or Unix-like, if that makes you Linux fans happy) machines out there and they’re all running the same or similar software under the hood and all have similarities in how they operate and are structured. In that sense, OS X is part of a much bigger market. And yet, I don’t see a whole lot to worry about from the Unix side of OS X either. We’ve seen a few security issues pop up (like the ssh thing a while back) but nothing that has exploded into a major virus outbreak.
One thing that may explain the differences between Unix-like platforms and Windows is the nature of the software that runs on each platform. Much of the software running under-the-hood on Macs is open source. That means anyone, including you and me, can download and look over the source code. When you have lots of programmers looking over the code, security issues can be spotted before they become a headache. This leads to proactive software patching as opposed to reactive—that is, patching after the viruses and malware are running rampant. Windows is closed-source, proprietary software and does not benefit from countless numbers of programmers and hackers viewing its code. In some unfortunate instances, security issues become known only after they have turned into viruses boring holes in your computer’s brain.


RE: Apple has no clue how to make anything secure.
By marraco on 7/25/2010 12:12:18 PM , Rating: 4
What a load of lies.

Nothing is farest of open source than anything from apple.

Try to get the source code of OSX.


By marraco on 7/25/2010 12:20:41 PM , Rating: 2
Apple is enemy of open source.

Each apple magazine have at least one article attacking open source as "mischievous", "risky", or non worthy, but never explains why.

Apple is enemy of all civil liberties. It says what software you can install on his phones, what music you can hear, and is trying to decide what newspapers you can read.


By afkrotch on 7/25/2010 9:18:54 PM , Rating: 3
ASLR is broken on OSX dumbass. Even the article states such.


It does not just work.
By rburnham on 7/23/2010 11:53:29 AM , Rating: 5
I work on a Mac every day at work. My main programs are Adobe Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop. I use Safari for web browsing and Entourage for email. Let me assure you that this setup can screw up like any other PC. Sometimes after a few hours of work the system just start chugging, sometimes Safari just doesn't want to load a page with some sort of Flash content, sometimes Illustrator tells me it can't export a PDF because it is out of memory. Macs are just like any other PC. They're not perfect.

I prefer my Windows 7 PC at home, but I don't hate the Mac.




RE: It does not just work.
By Motoman on 7/24/2010 2:08:11 AM , Rating: 4
All of those programs will work better on a PC. Well, other than Entourage - use Outlook.


RE: It does not just work.
By B3an on 7/24/2010 12:00:12 PM , Rating: 3
I'm also in the design/web design business, and use a ton of Adobe software daily. I use it on Win7 x64, most of my friends (also designers) use Macs... and they always have more trouble than i do with software, OS, browsers (a lot actually use safari, you'd think people in web design would be more educated here) .. the quality of my work is far higher and gets done quicker too, although thats largely down to me, but the superior and more capable Win7 platform certainly helps.

Another thing i like to rub in there faces is that i'm on a 6 core i7 980X machine, OC'd to 4.2GHz, with 12GB RAM, RAID SSD's, Crossfire 5870's... way faster with higher quality components (including case and PSU) than any of there Macs but costs less or equal to most of the Macs they use.


RE: It does not just work.
By Denigrate on 7/25/2010 8:56:13 AM , Rating: 3
The Arts & Crafts dept at work MUST have a Mac. The memory usage on them is ridiculous. 8 GB of memory, and they have the same issue of "out of memory". I guess it's OK though because poor memory management is a feature, not a flaw. The employees on Windows just don't have this issue.


Safari?
By ksherman on 7/23/2010 10:37:32 AM , Rating: 3
First thing I did when I got my MacBook Pro was go to GetFireFox.com... Now I use FF and Chrome and open Safari MAYBE once every other month. Never liked using Safari.

Safari has been getting a bad rap for security issues, and fortunately there are plenty of [better] options out there.




RE: Safari?
By Reclaimer77 on 7/23/2010 5:03:15 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah I'm torn here. On one hand I wanna slam Apple for this, rightfully so. But on the other I'm thinking "who the fuk uses Safari anyway!?"


RE: Safari?
By jbwhite99 on 7/26/2010 10:51:59 AM , Rating: 2
not me, but I got an update message for iTunes, and yet again it had Safari (version 5) pre-selected for download. This is how Apple gets suckers to use this browser.


RE: Safari?
By Norseman4 on 7/23/2010 8:14:08 PM , Rating: 2
For future reference, GetFireFox's primary NS server is ns.meer.net and its secondary is ns.mozilla.org.

The official FireFox site uses ns1. & ns2.mozilla.net.

It would be better going straight to www.firefox.com instead of letting a third party (meer) redirect you to where you want to go. (I do not know what meer does)

http://www.whois.net/whois/firefox.com
http://www.whois.net/whois/getfirefox.com
http://www.whois.net/whois/meer.net


By iDarwin on 7/23/2010 11:37:49 AM , Rating: 5
What the hell else is a comparison good for...




By Hieyeck on 7/23/2010 1:56:56 PM , Rating: 2
Good catch, that was a chuckle.

They probably mean that the comparison should not be used as evidence for or against any particular browser. Possibly unscientific methods, etc.


Not really accurate
By macthemechanic on 7/24/2010 11:23:29 AM , Rating: 2
Most of the information in this article is false, including most of the comments. It may be best if we stick to what we know for certain.




RE: Not really accurate
By afkrotch on 7/26/2010 12:13:25 AM , Rating: 2
Yet you provide no insight as to what is false. I'm going to stick with the article being true. Sensationalized sure, but not incorrect.


RE: Not really accurate
By viewangle on 7/29/2010 11:04:55 AM , Rating: 2
Agreed, claims of inaccuracy or falsehood need to be substantiated or at least clearly point out what details you're calling incorrect/false.


To clarify
By mstrmac on 7/25/2010 1:33:05 AM , Rating: 2
With the latest iterations of OS X, Apple has introduced many initiatives to prevent security issues. One of the most interesting is known as address space layout randomization (ASLR) which is more commonly known as memory randomization. ASLR is important because it makes one of the most common security issues, the buffer overflow, almost impossible to exploit.

For those of you who don’t understand it, think of it this way. Imagine the memory of your computer like a map of your hometown. Some vandal wants to change some of the street names to mess with your map. In order for him to do that, he needs to know the exact longitude and latitude of those streets. It’s easy for him because he can buy a map of your hometown and get that same information.

The latest version of OS X chops that map up into little squares and randomly rearranges them, but is also smart enough to know how to continue reading the map unhindered by the confusing rearrangement. Nobody is able to buy a map arranged exactly like that so nobody can get the exact information they need to vandalize your map. It doesn’t mean they can’t. They just can’t quite zero in on exact targets anymore.
On top of that, OS X also offers tagged downloading of applications (a system that watches very closely what gets downloaded and run on your computer and alerts the user before it runs for the first time), stronger forms of built-in encryption, more robust firewall features that watch for malware-like activity and application sandboxing to prevent hackers from targeting program-specific vulnerabilities.

Now, I’m not naive. I have no doubt that OS X will eventually have security issues that result in some kind of malware. No system is perfect and no amount of operating system cheerleading will change that. Someday, we’ll see the first OS X virus. However, I’m confident that these problems will never approach anything like what we’ve seen on Windows, and there’s little reason to think Apple’s gradually increasing market share will change that.

What’s funny about the market share argument too is that it really doesn’t even apply to the Mac to begin with as it assumes the Mac is a platform unto itself. That was true in the old days, but the Mac doesn’t run OS 9 anymore. It’s OS X, and OS X is, underneath the pretty user interface, Unix. There are lots and lots of Unix (or Unix-like, if that makes you Linux fans happy) machines out there and they’re all running the same or similar software under the hood and all have similarities in how they operate and are structured. In that sense, OS X is part of a much bigger market. And yet, I don’t see a whole lot to worry about from the Unix side of OS X either. We’ve seen a few security issues pop up (like the ssh thing a while back) but nothing that has exploded into a major virus outbreak.
One thing that may explain the differences between Unix-like platforms and Windows is the nature of the software that runs on each platform. Much of the software running under-the-hood on Macs is open source. That means anyone, including you and me, can download and look over the source code. When you have lots of programmers looking over the code, security issues can be spotted before they become a headache. This leads to proactive software patching as opposed to reactive—that is, patching after the viruses and malware are running rampant. Windows is closed-source, proprietary software and does not benefit from countless numbers of programmers and hackers viewing its code. In some unfortunate instances, security issues become known only after they have turned into viruses boring holes in your computer’s brain.




RE: To clarify
By afkrotch on 7/25/2010 9:48:08 PM , Rating: 2
Post the same thing twice. Once as a reply and not as it's own comment. All while talking about ASLR, which also happens to be broken on OSX anyways.

Please don't compare OSX to other Unix companies. Unlike Apple, companies like HP, Sun/Oracle, etc actually patch their security flaws as quickly as possible. They don't bury their head in the sand. Companies need to know any kind of threats that may arise, so they can implement their own security measures, until the vunerability is closed.

Also Mac is as open source as freaking Windows. I'd love to see you get the source code for their programs. There's a reason Apple charges you money for things like iLife. Cause it's not open source.

Even if their software is open source and everyone can scrutinize the code and find flaws, then why is Apple so slow to patch anything?

Please, you need to just STFU, cause it's pretty obvious you don't know WTF you're talking about.


RE: To clarify
By djtechsupport on 8/6/2010 2:05:31 PM , Rating: 2
One small other thing. I've never heard of Unix being open source, but Linux is. And Mac as OSS, b friggin S! Their software, their OS, come on! Here, perfect example.

http://www.zyra.org.uk/os-air.htm


Just small mistake discovered
By solarrocker on 7/23/2010 10:47:45 AM , Rating: 2
"The flaw was discovered by discovered by Jeremiah Grossman"

Might want to fix that




By macthemechanic on 7/24/2010 11:25:36 AM , Rating: 2
I know Jeremiah. He's a showman that has been tempted by the limelight and hasn't really published any real security findings in years.


Try looking at the setting options
By macthemechanic on 7/24/2010 11:20:54 AM , Rating: 2
Safari 5 allows you to select or deselect if you want to allow Autofill to act on web forms using Information from your Address Book card, or just keep to User names and passwords or other information. You can easily deselect it if you wish. On the iPhone, the Safari options for Autofill are selected using the Settings button. The default is only to autofill User names and passwords, other information is not selected.




By afkrotch on 7/25/2010 9:30:46 PM , Rating: 2
Try not having the flaw to begin with.


Could this be???
By masamasa on 7/23/2010 11:14:18 AM , Rating: 2
Apple, the notorious slanderers of Microsoft having 'issues' with their products? I'm astonished. Professional mud slingers is more like it.

I'm a Mac and I....er....have some problems too (with my overpriced products).




Impossible!!!
By xyn081s on 7/23/2010 1:25:09 PM , Rating: 2
They're just testing it wrong!!!




Meanwhile in the real world....
By Tony Swash on 7/23/10, Rating: -1
RE: Meanwhile in the real world....
By themaster08 on 7/24/2010 2:30:11 AM , Rating: 3
quote:
In the real world Windows user are attacked in their hundreds of thousands by real and actual exploits. So many real Windows attacks that it's not news anymore.
Contradiction much, Tony?

You tell us that Windows exploits are not news worthy, yet post a link to a news article showing an exploit?

Here's another which I'm sure you've seen:-
http://www.dailytech.com/USB+Drive+Malware+Exploit...

However, Microsoft do not cloak their vulnerabilities in a shade of ignorance, instead inform the public that the issue is being investigated and a fix will be issued in due course.

quote:
Here is a news story based on fact - there are no viruses attacking Macs - none.
Viruses != vulnerabilities. A machine can be exploited without the use of malware.

Here's another - there are more opportunities to attack a Mac than there are a Windows machine - lots more.


RE: Meanwhile in the real world....
By Tony Swash on 7/24/10, Rating: -1
By jamesjwb on 7/24/2010 10:18:57 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
In reality using a Mac is much safer than using a Windows PC and many millions of people know that, hence the steady rise in Mac sales. Windows will be forever tarnished as unsafe because it was so hugely unsafe for so long at the peak of its popularity.


The "steady rise in Mac sales" is because of safety is it? I know Apple aren't an engineering driven company, I thought they were a marketing driven company, but it turns out they're actually a safety driven company. Makes sense, that's why they sell so well.

quote:
Most of the consuming public are like the hypothetical mum above. They want to get tech gadgets out of the box, including computers, and expect to be able to just turn them and use them safely. And why shouldn't they expect that?


Yes, they should expect this, but currently they are getting this by proxy with Apple. I'd rather be in an environment that realizes and reacts to security issues than use something that is ripe for the plucking but at the moment isn't being plucked, especially when all signs point to it being plucked up the ass repeatedly very soon.


RE: Meanwhile in the real world....
By themaster08 on 7/25/2010 4:21:58 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
In reality using a Mac is much safer than using a Windows PC and many millions of people know that, hence the steady rise in Mac sales.
Like the poster above, I fail to agree that the increase in Mac sales is due to increased security. However I do think that it may be a contributing factor, if only an insignificant one.

quote:
This means that many millions of people (and businesses) have had real and actual experience of being attacked and compromised whilst using a Windows PC whilst almost no one has had a similar actual experience using a Mac.
Whilst that maybe true, consumer and business adoption of Macs compared to Windows machines is absolutely miniscule. If Windows is causing their machines to be compromised, why is it that most continue to use Windows?

I'm sure you'll agree that the only way to realise the true security of OS X would be for Apple to allow it to be installed on any computer. However, due to Apple's business practices and inconsideration for the needs of the tech community, this will never happen. Benefitting society is non-essential to Apple. Profit is the only determinant that drives them.

quote:
Anyone advising her to use a Windows machine like that would be asking for trouble but you can do that with Macs safely - I have seen many people do just that and nothing bad has ever happened to them
The same goes for Windows. I know many people (including many non-techies) that have had absolutely no problems with the operating system. Why is that? Common sense prevailed.

Their anti-virus program was kept up-to-date. They visit and download from only trusted sites. If they felt a specific program was untrustworthy they had the sense to ask. They weren't swayed by pretty emoticons for their IM program. They use programs such as Web of Trust so they know which websites are secure.

It might come as a surprise to you, but there are many tech illiterate people out there that live in a world of common sense and consequence, that includes the use of the internet.

Every single person knows that the internet can be an extremely dangerous place, and most are aware of the consequences, yet people will blindly browse the web, downloading whatever makes their IM program look pretty. I'm afraid, for those people, it really doesn't matter what platform they choose to use, they will always be vulnerable, and rightfully so, because they're idiots.

They're the type of people that would enter their credit card details into a fraudulent site and have their bank details and funds compromised. No platform is going to help those people.

quote:
Most of the consuming public are like the hypothetical mum above. They want to get tech gadgets out of the box, including computers, and expect to be able to just turn them and use them safely. And why shouldn't they expect that?
I agree, everyone should expect that, but like anything, you need to be aware of what's going on around you and the dangers that may strike. We live in a world of consequence, and that includes the internet. A little common sense can go a long way.

quote:
I think consumers got tremendously tired of tech kit that didn't work, or was really complex to use, or needed tweaking and constant vigilance and care. Apple, after the return of Jobs, deeply recognised this and tried to make kit that came closest to being the sort or kit people wanted.
I'm sorry, but you make it sound as though setting up any machine except for a Mac is as complicated as configuring some mid-90's Linux distro. If you're referring to Windows in a similar context, you couldn't possibly be further from the truth. When was the last time you actually used Windows?

quote:
next quarter Mac sales will be up again and Apple will probably have higher revenues than Microsoft.
Next quarter will also see another rise in Windows 7 sales, which has already surpassed 175 million licenses. Didn't you hear? Microsoft just posted their biggest Q4 earnings in their history, eclipsing that of Apple's. I expect more record breaking quarters to come, especially during the holiday season.


By Tony Swash on 7/25/2010 11:10:21 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
I'm sorry, but you make it sound as though setting up any machine except for a Mac is as complicated as configuring some mid-90's Linux distro. If you're referring to Windows in a similar context, you couldn't possibly be further from the truth. When was the last time you actually used Windows?


Actually I just reinstalled Windows 7 because the previous install crapped out (Dell hardware problem) and have used and installed every version of Windows since Windows 95. Windows always feels like its been designed by a committee of engineers working to a deadline (which is probably an accurate picture).

Lots of counterpoints to my argument but little time to cover them all (I am on my vacation guys! currently Taos NM) so here are a few points.

I don't buy the security through obscurity - what tech company could be less obscure than Apple right now. The million macs sold each month are probably going to people from a higher than average income bracket and to lots of creative professionals - a juicy target. Yet no real world exploits.

Ultimately it doesn't matter if Windows is more or less secure than Macs - the history of Windows has completely tarnished the brand in the public's mind as far as security goes.

As for market share - a couple of points. First broadly Mac user don't much care about market share (although overtaking Windows would please us) what we care about is the health of Apple and the health of the Mac platform. Both of which are truly excellent. This is because our main concern by far is that we can continue to use our macs and never be forced to use windows.

Secondly just before Jobs returned to Apple he was asked what he would do if he ran Apple (which was teetering on the edge of going bust at the time) and he said he would "milk the mac for all he could whilst looking for the next big thing" and one cannot but help feel he has done just that. The Mac platform is now healthy and secure (as a viable platform in the market), it has a great rep amongst the buying public and Mac sales continue to grow healthily. Meanwhile Apple has moved strategically to be a major and possibly dominant player in the new post-desktop world of mobile device computing.

So Apple fans are very pleased with the shape of the world right now.

Why and how Apple has succeeded so astonishingly well (and I think we can all agree that Apple under Jobs has been one of greatest business turn-arounds in history) and why Apple infuriates so many techies is avery interesting story and one I hope to post more about when I come back from my current vacation.

Till then keep well. I do hope the sunshine comes out in Taos today!


RE: Meanwhile in the real world....
By Reclaimer77 on 7/25/2010 7:35:53 AM , Rating: 2
Tony, as uaual, there is so much wrong with your opinions - and they are opinions - that I don't even know where to begin.

quote:
In reality using a Mac is much safer than using a Windows PC and many millions of people know that, hence the steady rise in Mac sales.


Well when "many millions" of people actually buy Mac's, maybe we'll find out. As of now, safety via obscurity is not a sound strategy.

"Steady rise" in Mac sales? Ok, have you seen the sales of Windows 7? Can you explain to me why Bootcamp exists, if what you're saying about Windows is true?

quote:
This means that many millions of people (and businesses) have had real and actual experience of being attacked and compromised whilst using a Windows PC whilst almost no one has had a similar actual experience using a Mac.


Because no one uses them, idiot! The market share of Mac's being used in businesses is somewhere around 2%!! That's barely enough to clear the margin of error!

Apple doesn't even try to compete with Windows in the business world because they know they can't. It's a proven fact.

quote:
The truth of the matter is this: if you had to give your completely non-techie mum a PC and you knew that she was going to just get it out of the box, turn it on and in its fresh from factory state connect it to the internet 24 hours a day what platform would you advise her to get?


No brainer, Windows. Because "mum" isn't going to be downloading porn, visiting porn sites, using instant messengers or pirating software via torrents.

But "mum" DOES take pictures, prints a lot, does e-mail and surfs. Now when she buys a camera or printer, and it has bundled software, what do you think it's compatible with? Hell what do you think ANY software she buys will be compatible with? Yeah you go have fun telling "mum" she has to either A) have an Apple store in her area for programs to buy or B) download and install everything digitally. Man I bet she'll LOVE the prospect of that!!

quote:
They also added the Apple store which was a stroke of genius because, once fully established, the Apple store made buying tech kit or getting tech advice from Apple an order or magnitude easier and more pleasurable than doing it with any other computer supplier.


Yeah because EVERYONE has an Apple store right around the corner! Why go to Wal Mart or the shopping mall, both convenient as hell, when you can drive to the nearest Apple Store for all your closed source needs!! Brilliant.

Or you could go to Best Buy I suppose. Their Mac software section has about 10 titles, 4 or those being Snow Leopard and family packs for Snow Leopard and so forth. Very impressive selection indeed!

quote:
They want to get tech gadgets out of the box, including computers, and expect to be able to just turn them and use them safely. And why shouldn't they expect that?


Hey, fucking moron! It's not 1998 anymore! Jesus, have you even USED Windows lately?? You shouldn't talk if you don't know both sides of the argument, which you clearly don't.

If Windows 7 or Vista doesn't work "out of the box" for you today, you should NOT be using computers in the first place. I love how you Mac guys feel the need to use the "lowest common denominator" argument. "Hey, if you're a complete illiterate moron, you'll want a Mac, so Mac's must be better." What?

quote:
next quarter Mac sales will be up again and Apple will probably have higher revenues than Microsoft.


Yeeeah, now we KNOW you are drinking the Koolaid. Apple's revenue is 90% phones, pads, and Mp3 players. Look how much they generate in JUST PC sales. It's pathetic. You're comparing Mac PC's to Windows PC's, so don't pull the revenue card with us. We're not impressed.


RE: Meanwhile in the real world....
By Tony Swash on 7/25/2010 5:30:09 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Hey, fucking moron! It's not 1998 anymore!


So much hostility to a complete stranger - where does it come from?

Back in the nineties when it looked as if Apple would collapse and Windows/Microsoft would achieve complete domination and the mac would be no more, us MacHeads used to get pretty ticked off, but that was because we thought we would be forced to use Windows. So our anger and resentment was somewhat understandable.

But some of you Window lovers seem to get all worked up just because someone is using a non-windows machine and Apple are making a hugely successful business out of being not-microsoft.

Why are you so upset about a bit of healthy competition?

No one will force you to use a Mac and nobody wants to.

Calm down - there is room for many different fruit in the garden.

Plus insulting strangers is bad karma.


RE: Meanwhile in the real world....
By afkrotch on 7/25/2010 9:28:35 PM , Rating: 2
Standard Mac user reply there, if I ever saw one. Lose the arguement (which happens 100% of the time), so question the other debater's sexual preference, personal life, or any other subject that may deter any further embarrasement.


RE: Meanwhile in the real world....
By Tony Swash on 7/26/2010 1:18:40 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Lose the arguement (which happens 100% of the time),


We don't have to win arguments with you guys (let's face it we we won't change your minds anyway) because given Apple's results over the last few years it looks to me like Apple is winning the only argument that counts - that's results in the real world.

Articles like this one slamming Apple on security don't matter, all the huff and puff on forums like this don't matter, what matters is whether Apple makes products that people want to buy and it seems that on that count Apple is enormously successful.


By afkrotch on 7/26/2010 1:24:04 AM , Rating: 2
We are talking about computers right? I mean, according to results, they are still sucking huge donkey balls in that field.

Mp3 player, mp3 player with phone capability, and 10" screen mp3 player seem to be doing well.


RE: Meanwhile in the real world....
By joeballow on 7/25/2010 10:09:32 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Hey, fucking moron! It's not 1998 anymore! Jesus, have you even USED Windows lately??


How can you possibly get this worked up over an comment in a safari bug article? Don't you have anything mildly important going on in your life to care about. Look, I am writing this from windows 7, so I'm no mac fanboy, but anyone who gets really worked up over the whole windows v. apple thing seems a little out of touch to me. They both do the exact same things, in almost the same ways.

I think windows is better, that's why I use it, but seriously you all need to calm down(on both sides of the debate). We can talk forever about which OS is more secure, but right now, I think OSX is better for the computer illiterate, which is a pretty large percentage of the computer using public. At school I spent hours removing viruses from windows laptops of people with no idea what they are doing, and the macs never had problems with that(not saying they had no problems, but no viruses, malware, etc.). Was it because they were all downloading torrents and porn? Absolutely, but still that was probably the right choice for them. For the people who know what they are doing, windows is probably the right choice for many reasons. I know for me the laptop I'm about to buy will be a 13" macbook, but it will be running windows 7 24/7. I can't seem to find a well constructed windows laptop with reasonable specs that even approaches the 10 hours the macbook gets in battery life. I'm around campus all day so the long battery life is going to be great. At the same time I have no interest in using OSX, I really quite like windows 7.

My point is this, whether you think a mac or windows products is best for you, everyone on both sides of the debate needs to calm down. You sound like idiots sometimes when you get so worked up over the differences between the two, which are petty in the grand scheme of things. Acknowledge that what is best for you may not be best for everyone, take a deep breath, and move on with your life. There are more important battles to fight, then this argument that is getting really old, of mac v. pc.


By afkrotch on 7/26/2010 12:09:36 AM , Rating: 2
You do know that battery life is going to drop the moment you start running Windows on it. That precious 10 hours is going to drop to like 5 hours.

I'd much rather just get a i3/i5 based HP TM2T tablet and get the same amount of battery life. But hey. Some of us actually make informed purchase decisions.


By themaster08 on 7/26/2010 3:45:52 AM , Rating: 2
I agree that these discussions can get a little hostile at times, but there's nothing wrong with a good old debate. That's the entire point of websites like this, right?

Let's face it, Tony's right. No one is going to change anyone's mind. No comment is going to change the entire outlook of everyone's opinions.

However, like most people here, I enjoy a good discussion and like to see the other side of things. You just have to accept that people have different ways of expressing their views. Some more hostile than others. That's fine by me, as long as they put up a good argument.


Lying to us again, Mick?
By Pirks on 7/23/10, Rating: -1
"Vista runs on Atom ... It's just no one uses it". -- Intel CEO Paul Otellini














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