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ZD: Safari for Windows security was botched

updated 02:55 pm EDT, Wed July 9, 2008

Safari for Win. security

The Windows version of Safari did not live up to Apple claims of it being "secured from day one," a new editorial claims. A ZDNet writer argues, for instance, that Safari should not have been set for automatic file downloading by default, as this can copy malicious executables to a person's computer. While these executables might not launch by themselves, automatic downloads prevent a person from exercising discretion, and Apple later admitted that code could be executed remotely.

The editorial further argues that Safari was vulnerable to "browser fuzzing," random data input meant to detect vulnerabilities. Apple is said to have been particularly guilty in this regard, as a year prior, several free fuzzing tools were released to the public, and used in a campaign to call the attention of many browser creators.

Safari is lastly said to have the fault of storing cache and cookie files in a predictable place, making it far easier for hackers to gain access to them. By contrast, Firefox generates random names for its profile folder, and Internet Explorer saves files in random directories. Under Safari, it is said, a local XML file could be executed remotely, and used to steal all of a person's cookies while hijacking browser sessions.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. LouZer

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +2

    um

    it's more of a blog than a full-blown 'editorial' or article.

  1. coldfusion1970

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Why oh why

    I still dont get why Windows users dont just buy a Mac. All their security problems just melt away when running Mac OS X.

    And they can play games in Boot Camp. Problem solved.

  1. BelugaShark

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -2

    RE: Why oh why

    Well sadly some crucial features on the Mac are still missing, such as in a dual monitor setup on Windows you can put an application on the right monitor and another application on the left monitor and each application will have its own drop-down menu on its own monitor. The Mac on the other-hand will have the menus on one of the two monitors, so you'll have to roll your mouse from one screen to the other to access your menu items. Another issue is the Finder windows, they are super-flaky, the best one (in my opinion) is the column view but there is not feature to turn-off that stupid file description column. There are many other Finder problems that we were hoping would get resolved when Leopard was launched but didn't.

    Other reasons are Acrobat, Flash, Maya, and other apps run circles around their Mac counterparts, Adobe's CS4 for the Mac has been delayed. Apple is not helping when they make last minute decision changes and throw-off their developers, like they did when they killed 64-bit Carbon. Nor are they helping with the major bug-infested updates such as OSX 10.5.3, not to mention the major bugs that haven't been addressed yet, such as the damn Keychain. Don't get me started on OSX Server, how can Apple release a dysfunctional AppleTalk file service in their Server application is beyond me. Or how they can release a Server update (specifically 10.4.10) that corrupts your served filesystem's tree and Apple's only solution is to buy DiskWarrior to fix it.

    So yes, there are less viruses and spyware on the Mac, but unfortunately Windows XP (not Vista) has many plausible plusses.

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