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Symantec: Mac users deluding themselves over security
MacCentral ^ | 09/19/2005 | Matthew Broersma

Posted on 09/19/2005 2:09:19 PM PDT by Panerai

Mac users are “operating under a false sense of security”, according to Symantec, and Firefox users will have to recognize that the open-source browser is currently a greater security risk than Internet Explorer.

Symantec’s latest Internet Security Threat Report, published Monday, found evidence that attackers are beginning to organize for attacks on the Mac operating system. Researchers also found that over the past six months, nearly twice as many vulnerabilities surfaced in Mozilla browsers as in Explorer.

“It is now clear that the Mac OS is increasingly becoming a target for the malicious activity, contrary to popular belief that the Mac OS is immune to traditional security concerns,” the report said.

Symantec said OS X - based on BSD Unix - now shares many of the security concerns affecting Unix users. “As Mac OS X users demand more features and implement more ports of popular UNIX applications, vulnerabilities and exploits targeting this operating system and its underlying code base are likely to increase,” Symantec said in the report.

The number of security bugs confirmed by Apple has remained about the same over the past two six-month reporting periods, with no widespread exploits, Symantec said. But an analysis of a rootkit called Mac OS X/Weapox - based on the AdoreBSD rootkit - indicates the situation might not last much longer. “While there have been no reports of widespread infection to date, this Trojan serves to demonstrate that as Mac OS X increases in popularity so too will the scrutiny it receives from potential attackers,” the report said. “Mac users may be operating under a false sense of security.”

(Excerpt) Read more at macworld.com ...


TOPICS: Technical
KEYWORDS: apple; cybersecurity; firefox; internetsecurity; propaganda; safari; symantec
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I would take this a lot more seriously if it did not come from Symantec, trying to get me to buy more of their products.
1 posted on 09/19/2005 2:09:23 PM PDT by Panerai
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To: Panerai

Uhmmmm Mac Central?


2 posted on 09/19/2005 2:11:24 PM PDT by DainBramage
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To: Panerai

Security is just a small reason why I use Macs. But I tell you what, in 8 years of using them I have never had mine down due to any virus.


3 posted on 09/19/2005 2:12:32 PM PDT by roostercogburn
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To: ShadowAce

FUD ping!


4 posted on 09/19/2005 2:12:53 PM PDT by JoJo Gunn (Help control the Leftist population. Have them spayed or neutered. )
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To: Panerai
the open-source browser is currently a greater security risk than Internet Explorer.

I would take this a lot more seriously if it did not include such preposterousities.

The fact (if it is one) that over the past six months, nearly twice as many vulnerabilities surfaced in Mozilla browsers as in Explorer doesn't imply "more security risk" at all.

Why does IE have vulnerabilities unpatched for months, and FF has them unpatched for hours?

5 posted on 09/19/2005 2:14:19 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Panerai

I can't take this seriously at all. Just because the Firefox developers admit it when a bug is found and have it fixed within days, and Microsoft doesn't admit a bug exist untill there are exploits already taking over your pc before fixing doesnt mean firefox has more bugs.. It just means Firefox bugs are reported and fixed, while Internet Explorer Bugs are kept secret and only fixed when MS deems in necessary.


6 posted on 09/19/2005 2:15:28 PM PDT by viper592
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To: Panerai
Researchers also found that over the past six months, nearly twice as many vulnerabilities surfaced in Mozilla browsers as in Explorer.

Of course, that doesn't mean that IE is any safer.

7 posted on 09/19/2005 2:15:55 PM PDT by Rodney King (No, we can't all just get along.)
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To: Panerai

Beware the crime statistics quoted by a lock salesman.


8 posted on 09/19/2005 2:16:02 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Panerai

They are telling us that MAC users are delusional, okay I can understand that point of view....lol


9 posted on 09/19/2005 2:16:03 PM PDT by stockpirate (If you are a John Kerry fan check out my about me page, you'll toss your lunch.)
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To: Panerai

Sounds like it came from Microsoft.


10 posted on 09/19/2005 2:16:16 PM PDT by RoadTest (Outlaw Korans; Proliferate Bibles (They're Good Reading))
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To: roostercogburn
Security is just a small reason why I use Macs. But I tell you what, in 8 years of using them I have never had mine down due to any virus.

In 22 years of using CP/M, MS-DOS and various flavors of Windows, I've never had a virus survive long enough to execute on any of my systems, much less take one down or even harm one. It's not all that hard to secure one's system.

Never used Macs; they don't run the software that I need to run and they're overpriced for what you get.

11 posted on 09/19/2005 2:16:28 PM PDT by Hank Rearden (Never allow anyone who could only get a government job attempt to tell you how to run your life.)
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To: Panerai

Sounds like it came from Microsoft.


12 posted on 09/19/2005 2:17:41 PM PDT by RoadTest (Outlaw Korans; Proliferate Bibles (They're Good Reading))
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To: Swordmaker

Symantec telling Mac users they are delusional over security ping


13 posted on 09/19/2005 2:21:44 PM PDT by Panerai
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To: roostercogburn
Security is just a small reason why I use Macs. But I tell you what, in 8 years of using them I have never had mine down due to any virus.

Security is just a small reason why I use a PC. But I tell you what, in 12 years of using them I have never had mine down due to any virus.

14 posted on 09/19/2005 2:22:31 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: RoadTest

I am not a big fan of Microsoft either, but lets face it, when they had 80+% of the market they had 95% of the hackers looking to exploit them. Now that people have a decent choice and more and more of us switch then these other companies are finding out what its like to have thousands of people hacking their code instead of a dozen. People start seriously hacking hard enough and they will find close to as many vulnerabilities in Mac and FF, just watch the number of patches keep rising.


15 posted on 09/19/2005 2:26:27 PM PDT by Abathar (Proudly catching hell for posting without reading since 2004)
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To: BigSkyFreeper
Security is just a small reason why I use Macs. But I tell you what, in 8 years of using them I have never had mine down due to any virus.

Security is just a small reason why I use a PC. But I tell you what, in 12 years of using them I have never had mine down due to any virus.

You're both probably telling the truth. But I'll bet I know who worked harder.

16 posted on 09/19/2005 2:26:46 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Hank Rearden
In 22 years of using CP/M, MS-DOS and various flavors of Windows, I've never had a virus survive long enough to execute on any of my systems, much less take one down or even harm one. It's not all that hard to secure one's system.

I've never even had the blue screen of death, but then again, I'm not loading a bunch of unneccesary gunk onto the system that brings it to a screeching halt.

17 posted on 09/19/2005 2:26:48 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: Hank Rearden
Never used Macs...

I did not know that.

18 posted on 09/19/2005 2:27:48 PM PDT by 6SJ7
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To: Abathar
People start seriously hacking hard enough and they will find close to as many vulnerabilities in Mac

What do you base this bit of wisdom on, pray tell?

Sounds like the old "nobody wants to hack it because there's only 20 million (or whatever) machines out there" argument.

Which makes me wonder why there are viruses for freakin' CELL PHONES with 100k units out there?

19 posted on 09/19/2005 2:29:51 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Izzy Dunne
You're both probably telling the truth. But I'll bet I know who worked harder.

If you said me, you're right. I make $50 an hour, and not one repeat customer.

20 posted on 09/19/2005 2:30:07 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: Panerai
Symantec programs are notorious for slowing a Mac's performance.

When Symantec System Works proved incompatable with OS 10.4, I deleted it and got a noticable increase in my G5's response.

21 posted on 09/19/2005 2:31:04 PM PDT by quidnunc (Omnis Gaul delenda est)
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To: Panerai

Bull. You can't write an effective virus for OSX because of its Unix base. There has never been an OSX virus, other than Word macros, etc.


22 posted on 09/19/2005 2:32:00 PM PDT by stinkerpot65
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To: Panerai
"I would take this a lot more seriously if it did not come from Symantec, trying to get me to buy more of their products"

EXACTLY! I paid for a years AV protection and after the first download it no longer worked. I could not get a single response from Symantec. If it were in my power I would send them a virus but I don't think their server handles any inbound traffic except credit card numbers.

23 posted on 09/19/2005 2:32:17 PM PDT by Wurlitzer (I have the biggest organ in my town {;o))
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To: Wurlitzer
EXACTLY! I paid for a years AV protection and after the first download it no longer worked. I could not get a single response from Symantec. If it were in my power I would send them a virus but I don't think their server handles any inbound traffic except credit card numbers.

A married couple decided to stick with Symantec, rather than go with a free option, because they were satisified with Symantec. Time came where they had to renew their subscription to continue using the product. They re-upped their subscription, didn't receive the e-mail with their billing info. When time come that the CC bill came in the mail, their statement showed Symantec received payment and cashed the money. I installed AVG on their system.

24 posted on 09/19/2005 2:36:31 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: Izzy Dunne
"...preposterousities.."

Did you borrow this word from Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton?
25 posted on 09/19/2005 2:38:06 PM PDT by contemplator (Capitalism gets no Rock Concerts)
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To: stinkerpot65
You can't write an effective virus for OSX because of its Unix base.

Sure you can, no one has bothered.

26 posted on 09/19/2005 2:42:46 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: BigSkyFreeper
If you said me, you're right. I make $50 an hour, and not one repeat customer.

Well, sure. If you make your living from virus propagation, you're bound to prefer Windows.

27 posted on 09/19/2005 2:43:41 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Izzy Dunne
Well, sure. If you make your living from virus propagation, you're bound to prefer Windows.

Reiterating what I've said already on THIS thread, I've owned Windows machines for 12 years, and not one system failure or virus attack. But, then again, it appears you didn't bother to read my previous post.

28 posted on 09/19/2005 2:48:02 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: Panerai
“It is now clear that the Mac OS is increasingly becoming a target for the malicious activity, contrary to popular belief that the Mac OS is immune to traditional security concerns,” the report said.

IMO, that sense of security comes less from a confidence in the Mac OS, than it does from a near-religious conviction on the part of Mac users that hackers really only hate Microsoft.

I won't pile all Mac users into that box, but in my experience there are a lot of people for whom "being a Mac user" includes a hefty dose of evangelistic zeal.

As for the hackers, they do include a goodly number of anti-MS types. But hackers are hackers first, and Mac OS is just another target.

29 posted on 09/19/2005 2:57:22 PM PDT by r9etb (Avast, ye scurrrrvy dogs!!!)
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To: BigSkyFreeper

Not every windows user is as saavy as you. Nor are Mac users. My point though is that as a casual computer home user, you WILL be more likely to have issues with viruses if you use Windows machines. I know 10 people right now whose machines are running slow because of the numerous viruses they have unknowingly picked up. Not that Macs don't have issues, just not due to viruses.


30 posted on 09/19/2005 2:58:36 PM PDT by roostercogburn
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To: Panerai

I am a Mac user and I am delusional


31 posted on 09/19/2005 2:59:38 PM PDT by jbstrick ( I've never been to heaven, but I've been to Oklahoma)
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To: Hank Rearden

Yep!


32 posted on 09/19/2005 3:01:44 PM PDT by rollinginmybuggy (The Electric Amish)
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To: jbstrick

OK, now for my window sucks comment: Macs are just better machines running a much better operating system.
Feel better now.


33 posted on 09/19/2005 3:01:54 PM PDT by roostercogburn
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To: Izzy Dunne

Anyone else notice Symantec's NAV and other security prices going up lately?


34 posted on 09/19/2005 3:02:39 PM PDT by anymouse
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To: roostercogburn
I know 10 people right now whose machines are running slow because of the numerous viruses they have unknowingly picked up.

Anyone who "unknowingly" picks up a virus these days is fiddling with the default settings.

35 posted on 09/19/2005 3:04:43 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: BigSkyFreeper
I read your post just fine. I believe you. Why is why I said that I think you're telling the truth. (Do you remember that part?)

And then you threw your money at me and bragged about having no repeat customers. Which makes me think that you make your living from virus propagation and elimination. Which means you would be poorer if there were fewer Windows machines out there. And the Mac folks don't have to work nearly as hard, or pay so much money for your services. Which was my point.

36 posted on 09/19/2005 3:06:17 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: BigSkyFreeper

My point exactly BigSky. Most home users in my opinion would be better served with a Mac. They really are more user friendly and harder to screw up.


37 posted on 09/19/2005 3:07:37 PM PDT by roostercogburn
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To: Panerai

Symantec hasn't produced an acceptable security app for Macs since OS 8.5. IIRC, that was around NAV version 5 or 6 for Mac.

They haven't figured out OS X yet. And when you install the Symantec AV app on an OS X Mac, it puts files all over the place. It practically takes an exorcism to get rid of it.

I might consider Clam AV at some point, but never a Symantec product.

I won't even use Symantec on my WinXP PC. I use Grisoft AVG 7.0 Pro.


38 posted on 09/19/2005 3:08:21 PM PDT by savedbygrace ("No Monday morning quarterback has ever led a team to victory" GW Bush)
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To: r9etb
a near-religious conviction on the part of Mac users that hackers really only hate Microsoft.

Well, I'm a Mac user (as well as Windows when I have to), and I would argue the exact opposite.

Hackers don't hate Microsoft - they LOVE Microsoft.

39 posted on 09/19/2005 3:08:31 PM PDT by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Izzy Dunne
Beware the crime statistics quoted by a lock salesman.

Ding ding ding! We have a winner.

40 posted on 09/19/2005 3:13:19 PM PDT by Terabitten (God grant me the strength to live a life worthy of those who have gone before me.)
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To: Hank Rearden
In 22 years of using CP/M, MS-DOS and various flavors of Windows, I've never had a virus survive long enough to execute on any of my systems, much less take one down or even harm one.

I'm in exactly the same boat. In 23 years of moderate to heavy computer use, to my knowledge none of my Microsoft OS computers have ever been infected. I've been emailed many viral attachments, but was never careless enough to open one. I always kept my AV software updated and promptly installed OS patches. Doing "the basics" has worked well for me.

There was some luck involved. I have run code that might have contained viruses, that I downloaded from sources that seemed OK, but might not have been.

41 posted on 09/19/2005 3:16:43 PM PDT by TChad
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To: roostercogburn
They really are more user friendly and harder to screw up.

Each situation is different. For example. Outlook Express is "defaulted" not to load images, scripts, and music within e-mails, unlike "yesteryear" when OE users experienced "content rich" e-mails in all their exploitative glory.

Windows Update provides yet another hurdle to overcome. When you first go there, you get a browser redirect error page that simply states that "Your browser security settings are set too high", and guides the user on how to allow ActiveX content from Microsoft only, to be allowed to install and execute.

My point is, one has to be savvy enough to understand all of that.

Symantec, is merely plugging their product, because they are in the business of making money.

42 posted on 09/19/2005 3:18:20 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: Izzy Dunne

Just what I was thinking!


43 posted on 09/19/2005 3:20:08 PM PDT by Serb5150 (www.illmitch.com)
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To: Izzy Dunne
Beware the crime statistics quoted by a lock salesman.

Given the behaviour on how Symantec's product detects a higher than normal "false positive" virus report, it's most likely true. PC Magazine ran a bench test of all the AV software out there when AVG came onto the scene, and Symantec scored toward the bottom of the list of about a dozen or so AV products out there. They concluded that Symantec detected a higher rate of "false positives" then the rest. AVG ended up being the "Editor's Choice" in that bench test.

44 posted on 09/19/2005 3:24:38 PM PDT by BigSkyFreeper (Liberalism is a form of insanity)
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To: Panerai

Head in the sand?

Hackers will attack solely based on the number of users of an OS.

Any OS is crackable. The widespread deployment is the ONLY reason Microsoft products are repeatedly attacked. Open Source will just give them some more keys.


45 posted on 09/19/2005 3:29:34 PM PDT by JustAnotherOkie
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To: Panerai

Another shot fired in the OS war bump.


46 posted on 09/19/2005 3:32:40 PM PDT by clyde asbury (Happiness is Ypsilanti, Michigan in my rear view mirror.)
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To: Panerai
And in other news today...

Chicken Little reports that the sky is falling.

I like to live dangerously. I'll continue to use my Mac -- and Firefox -- without benefit of any of Symantec's wonderful products.
47 posted on 09/19/2005 3:45:18 PM PDT by sonjay
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To: JustAnotherOkie
The widespread deployment is the ONLY reason Microsoft products are repeatedly attacked.

Wrong

48 posted on 09/19/2005 3:45:28 PM PDT by ShadowAce (Linux -- The Ultimate Windows Service Pack)
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To: stinkerpot65
Will someone help out an old geezer that has forgotten his antique computer skills. I thought that Internet Explorer and the associated email programs were vulnerable to hackers because they were integrated into the Microsoft operating system. This integration occurred because some high priced executive in MS thought that they could sell more browsers that way.

I also thought that an independent browser and an independent email program inherently foiled viruses. Am I wrong?

When we come to Macs the browser and emails are independent of OS X, hence they inherently are more secure. Do I reason incorrectly.

Thanks
49 posted on 09/19/2005 4:02:33 PM PDT by Citizen Tom Paine (An old sailor sends)
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To: ShadowAce

What's right?


50 posted on 09/19/2005 4:02:58 PM PDT by JustAnotherOkie
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