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"Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town."

The battle between Microsoft and Apple in the computing market has raged on for decades. While Microsoft has a commanding lead in the operating system market with Windows, Apple isn't exactly backing down with OS X -- in fact, the Cupertino-based company continues to grab market share and a large portion of the $1,000+ computing market.

When Windows and OS X users get into arguments on the web, Windows users often point to OS X's tiny market share while OS X users point to how vulnerable Windows operating systems have been in the past to exploits. However, according to security guru Charlie Miller, OS X users should subscribe to the idea that "people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones".

Miller claims to have found no less than 20 zero-day exploits within OS X. Miller will present the exploits at CanSecWest next week in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Miller told Heise Security, "Mac OS X is like living in a farmhouse in the country with no locks, and Windows is living in a house with bars on the windows in the bad part of town."

"They sell lots of computers and nobody [shies away from] Apple computers because of a perceived lack of security," Miller added. "So in their minds, they don't have a security problem until it affects their bottom line, which hasn't been the case, yet"

OS X has made the news plenty of times over the past year for security holes. Last June, Apple finally fixed a Java exploit which went unpatched for nearly a year. In late August, Apple shipped Snow Leopard with a version of Flash that was susceptible to outside attacks.

Miller also took Apple to task last year saying that security protections in OS X weren't quite up to par with Windows 7. He noted, "It's harder to write exploits for Windows than the Mac, but all you see are Windows exploits. That's because if [the hacker] can hit 90% of the machines out there, that's all he's gonna do. It's not worth him nearly doubling his work just to get that last 10%."



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RE: $1000+ Computers
By crystal clear on 3/20/2010 1:51:08 PM , Rating: 2
Behind Pwn2Own: Exclusive Interview With Charlie Miller

Alan: So, if you had to make a recommendation, Mac, PC, or Linux? Or do you find them to be equally (in)secure?

Charlie: I'll leave Linux out of the equation since I know my grandma couldn't run it. Between Mac and PC, I'd say that Macs are less secure for the reasons we've discussed here (lack of anti-exploitation technologies) but are more safe because there simply isn't much malware out there. For now, I'd still recommend Macs for typical users as the odds of something targeting them are so low that they might go years without seeing any malware, even though if an attacker cared to target them it would be easier for them.



http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/pwn2own-mac-ha...


RE: $1000+ Computers
By Alexstarfire on 3/20/2010 11:00:27 PM , Rating: 2
He pretty much said what most people on this forum have said. Security and safety aren't the same thing and that while Macs are safer (ATM) they aren't as secure.


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