AAPL Stock: 117.81 ( -0.22 )

Printed from

Mac OS X more vulnerable than WinXP

updated 10:00 pm EST, Tue February 28, 2006

Mac OS X or WinXP

Apple's Mac OS X has many security vulnerabilities than its Windows XP counterpart, according to a ZDNet blog posting that polls the number of vulnerabilities from the independent security research group Secunia along with the number of CVE issues for Microsoft Windows XP and Mac OS X within the last two years. The posting follows the recent reports of Mac OS X worms and an extremely critical Mac OS X zero-day exploit that has yet to be patched. Looking for a better response from Apple on the security, George Ou concludes: "The data is clear, and Apple has a lot more vulnerabilities of every kind ranging from moderately critical to extremely critical. While Windows had some months with more security disclosures, they are more spread out while Apple tends to release mega-advisories with dozens of vulnerabilities at a time. There were seven months where Apple disclosed more a dozen or more highly critical vulnerabilities."

by MacNN Staff



  1. Daveecee

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Let's take a look at what actually crashes more and has more problems.

  1. SteveTech

    Joined: Dec 1969


    What the???

    I guess the Microsoft/ZDNet "Reality Distortion Field" must be working overtime. No OS is 100% safe. But I don't remember the Mac virus that took down half the internet. Oh yeah, there wasn't one.

  1. Detrius

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Show me one successful exploit, and I'll consider taking the article as something other than FUD.

  1. beeble

    Joined: Dec 1969


    type of probs

    Since OS X includes a mass of unix software, every time these programs get patched to fix a security glitch OS X gets hit on these security sites as vulnerable to the problem. Except 99% of this software is turned off by default on OS X. Take php. When php has a security problem OS X has a security problem according to these people. Except 99.9999% of mac users don't know what php is let alone how to run it and turn it on in apache. Most don't know what that is either but they know how to turn on web serving.

    So most of the security "problems" these people cite with OS X are actually a non issue for the vast majority of OS X installations around the world. Would anyone dare make the same claim about the Windows/Outlook/IE security mess?

  1. macuser

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Just the facts, ma'am

    Where are the facts substantiating this claim? What percentage of the mac community is having problems with malware software compared to the windows community? I use WinXP at work where I'm fed up with frequent installs of anti-virus patches just about on a weekly basis. Simple solution for the protection from security exposure in Safari is to use Mozilla Firefox instead. I will not be snookered into having to buy additional memory-hogging anti-virus and security software products when there are simpler alternatives.

  1. SierraDragon

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Greedy Idiots

    These folks in the security biz are just angry because Apple won't play with them and let them make money. Ergo they proclaim absurd headlines about "vulnerabilities" that are in essence true; BUT MS vulnerabilities have been successfully breached thousands of time versus zero for Mac in ~7 years. Perhaps part of the reason Macs have stayed clean is precisely because Apple refuses to share with the a/v folks.

  1. Terrin

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I love how in the course of two weeks, all the sudden the Mac OSX is some insecure platform. Moreover, it is all supposedly because of some lab created worms that have not actually been released.

    I guarentee there is a concerted effort to paint this picture.

  1. webraider

    Joined: Dec 1969



    In some ways OS X will be more vulnderable than OS 9 because of it's Unix foundations.. it can be hacked in some ways that OS 9 couldn't be. This is partially because there are more people out there familiary with Unix than OS 9, and what made OS 9 more secure was that it was that you simply could not get access to the shell.. It's too easy to access that in Mac OS X as it's a GUI on top of a shell. This is the same problem with Windows... a GUI on a Dos shell or modern derivative there of.

  1. technohedz

    Joined: Dec 1969


    9 v x

    There's no way 9 was more secure. There were all kinds of nasties running through Apples OS up until OS X. Sure, it's UNIX, but a lot of it isn't even open source. Wow, you can run a terminal....and? Most of the 'exploits' are due to peoples actions..actions that are simply put STUPID. Can't be protected from that. XP..give me a break. This is a joke and another and another. Yep..I'd say there's a concerted effort to get apple selling anti-virus software. If symantec hadn't screwed up to begin with, we might be running their vector for disease. Since Mcaseee only cares about their corporate contracts, it's not an easy sell AND their program DID NOT work. You could dl the text test file and it wouldn't eicar warn you until you copied it.

    Hey! Maybe windows is more secure because the people writing the anti-virus software put a lot of effort into to why they do that...erm... geee lets think about it... and the Dos shell... whatver

  1. Gabriel Morales



    Oh, please...

    More Mac virus FUD. They won't give up, will they?

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.


Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook


Most Popular


Recent Reviews

Ultimate Ears Megaboom Bluetooth Speaker

Ultimate Ears (now owned by Logitech) has found great success in the marketplace with its "Boom" series of Bluetooth speakers, a mod ...

Kinivo URBN Premium Bluetooth Headphones

We love music, and we're willing to bet that you do, too. If you're like us, you probably spend a good portion of your time wearing ...

Jamstik+ MIDI Controller

For a long time the MIDI world has been dominated by keyboard-inspired controllers. Times are changing however, and we are slowly star ...


Most Commented