Mac OS X Security Must Become a Priority: 10 Reasons Why

NEWS ANALYSIS: Mac OS X is widely viewed as an exceptionally secure operating system. But is that reputation truly deserved anymore? Recent developments such as the news about the Flashback Trojan infecting as many as 600,000 Macs around the world show there are good reasons for Mac users to pay closer attention to security.

With news of the Flashback Trojan impacting more than 600,000 Macs around the world, security related to Apple€™s Mac OS X platform has stepped back into the spotlight. Security researchers and software vendors are licking their lips over the potential business opportunity this situation presents.

Meanwhile, the situation has put Apple in a bad light because it appears it was slow to respond o the problem, since it is just now patching a 3-month-old Java flaw, and all the while, malicious hackers are laughing. It€™s a serious situation that should prompt more Mac users to pay closer attention to security.

But the Flashback Trojan is just one of many reasons Mac OS X security should concern all of its users. As nice as the platform is and as well as it runs it suffers from a number of potential flaws that can run amok in a person€™s life. Even worse, the software doesn€™t appear to be Apple€™s main focus, making some wonder if enough is being done to secure the platform.

It€™s a good time to examine Mac OS X security and find out once and for all why securing Apple€™s operating system should be a priority for consumers and enterprise users.

1. It€™s more secure than Windows, but is that enough?

There€™s little debating that Mac OS X is more secure than Windows. However, being more secure than Windows does not mean that it€™s really secure. Apple will need to start thinking clearly about the quality of its operating system and realize that being more secure than Windows isn€™t enough.

2. Malware is present

There€™s a common misconception that Mac OS X malware is scarce in the wild. However, it does in fact exist, and as the Flashback Trojan shows, it€™s impacting people across the globe. For current Mac OS X users, accepting the fact that the operating system is vulnerable to malware is step one in making the operating system more secure.

3. Security firms aren€™t moving fast enough

Looking around the Mac App Store, it appears that there are few security companies that truly understand the importance of safeguarding the operating system. However, malware creators are moving quickly into the Mac security arena, and it€™s about time more security firms follow suit.

4. Apple hasn€™t made it a priority

It€™s tough to say that Apple has truly made security in Mac OS X a priority. After all, the company talks constantly about the new iPad, iPhones and its many other devices. But when does Apple go public with groundbreaking advancements in security? It€™s becoming a major concern for those who have been impacted by Mac OS X€™s security flaws.

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger is a longtime freelance contributor to several technology and business publications. Over his career, Don has written about everything from geek-friendly gadgetry to issues of privacy...