“People are way too paranoid these days. Especially Mac users. They’re going completely insane lately. You’ve got Symantec claiming that Mac OS X is at risk for malware. Despite the fact that in 4 years since OS X’s release (Happy Belated Birthday, Mac OS X!) there hasn’t been one virus or ‘valid’ trojan. Downloading an under 200k file off a peer to peer network that claims to be Microsoft Word (one of the most bloated apps on the Mac) is not valid. Nor are concepts. Then you’ve got that silly root kit called John the Ripper. The problem with root kits is that they’re only really useful if you already have access to the machine. In the case of John the Ripper/Opener you had to have already had administrator access to install the thing. So chances are the guy that had it installed on his computer had let someone use his computer that he shouldn’t have,” rosyna writes on the Unsanity Webblog.

“Now Symantec has vested interest in making Mac users paranoid and scared. The more paranoid or scared their customers are, the happier Symantec is since they sell anti-virus software. The funniest thing about them trying to say that OS X is a malware target is the fact that just a few months ago a vulnerability was found in Symantec’s file scanning libraries. So their antivirus software could be used as a vector to spread viruses. Go figure. My point is that even if viruses on the Mac increased two thousand percent, that’d still mean zero viruses on the Mac,” rosyna writes.

“What’s worse is that people always try to claim OS X has nothing because it is such a small target. That claim doesn’t work. We have a virus for mobile phones and a virus for a firewall that less than a hundred thousand people use (which I can’t seem to find right now). These things are much, much smaller targets than OS X yet they have viruses written for them. Why is it so hard to believe that there are no viruses for OS X just because OS X is better engineered? Most of the things I see now days exploit buffer overflows. And you see security fixes for such overflows on OS X all the time. The issue here is it is much harder to run executable code from a buffer overflow on the PowerPC than it is from an x86 chip. On the x86 basically any memory is executable. On the PPC you have to make sure it goes into the two separate caches (data and instruction) in a very specific manner. Depending on the program, such an exploit may only run executable code 16% of the time. The rest of the time, it will just crash,” rosyna writes.

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Those with the most invested in the status quo, be it in cash, time, effort, pride, ego, etc., will the the ones spreading the most fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) against the Mac platform. As the Mac shows continued growth, the FUD will increase; it’s already happening. Mac users aren’t paranoid about viruses (we can plainly see that we’re unaffected), we’re just sick and tired of the FUD. Sadly, we probably should just get used to it, because it’s going to get worse before it gets better.

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