“Look, one really hates to crow over others’ misfortunes, but there are times when we’re doubly pleased our office (and home) runs on Apple Macs, not Windows computers. About the first or second week of every month in fact. That’s when Microsoft, developer of the Windows operating system, issues its regular warnings about the latest security problems and viruses to affect PCs running its bug-ridden software,” David Frith reports for Australian IT.
Frith reports, “Last week’s bulletin, to no-one’s surprise, listed yet another potentially deadly flaw in most Windows versions. The flaw, if left unpatched, could let attackers run malicious programs on users’ personal computers. Microsoft gives a critical rating to the risk associated with flaws in Windows NT, 2000, XP and Server 2003, and is urging its millions of users worldwide to apply software patches pronto.”
“Security glitches are not unknown in the Mac world, but they’re rare. Viruses and worms are rarer still – virtually non-existent. There’s no need for Apple to issue monthly bulletins,” Frith reports.
“Is Mac OS X any better? You bet. ‘Mac OS and Linux are written in such a way that any faults don’t have such widespread effects,’ [Bill Thompson, a computing expert writing for the London Times] says. ‘They have a proper security architecture built in, limiting access. Windows didn’t have this until Windows Server 2003. Microsoft originally thought that because Windows was a personal computing operating system it would not be connected to a network, so such security against outsiders was not needed,'” Frith reports. “Mac and Linux were always multi-user systems. ‘Why Microsoft did not change this stance as the internet took off is known only to Microsoft. It didn’t take security seriously.'”
“As this column has pointed out before, when a program tries to install itself in Mac OS X or Linux, a dialog box asks for permission from someone with the authority to make changes, and demands a password,” Frith reports. “Windows XP just installs such programs, including viruses and other malware, frequently without the user having even knowing.”
Full article here.