Mac OS X Less Secure Than Vista?

Illustration for article titled Mac OS X Less Secure Than Vista?

If prize-winning security researcher Dino Dai Zovi is correct, it's time for Mac fanboys to stop being so smug about Mac OS X security. Dai Zovi says Microsoft Windows Vista slam dunks Mac OS X 10.4 when it comes to vulnerabilities:

"I have found the code quality, at least in terms of security, to be much better overall in Vista than Mac OS X 10.4. It is obvious from observing affected components in security patches that Microsoft's Security Development Lifecycle (SDL) has resulted in fewer vulnerabilities in newly written code. I hope that more software vendors follow their lead in developing proactive software security development methodologies."

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Should we believe this guy?

Yes, actually.

This is not just some paid shill. He's the guy who took home a $10,000 prize for his MacBook hijack a couple of weeks ago. But he has a tip or two to help keep things as secure as possible, too:

I recommend that Mac users make their primary user a non-admin account, use a separate keychain for important passwords, and store sensitive documents in a separate encrypted disk image. I think these are fairly straightforward steps that many users can take to better protect their sensitive information on their computer.

Why do these hackers do this, anyway? Apparently there is no shelter from the storm of miscreants who want to hack into our stuff.

Contest winner: Vista more secure than Mac OS [Macworld, via CrunchGear]

DISCUSSION

Take the 'my OS more secure than yours' comments with a grain of salt. Who cares if this OS more secure than that one since what really matters is that someone wants to exploit whatever vulnerabilities that are available. I remember having conversations with Mac users who claimed that the reason there are previous few virus strains on the Mac is because it is so secure. Hogwash. NOTHING is completely secure. Banks are more secure than any software program, yet there are robberies on a daily basis. Does it matter if Bank of America is more secure than Wells Fargo? Not if everyone is keeping their money at BofA, because that is the one that will be robbed. That simple.

Want to be safe from virus strains and worms? I recommend buying a used Amiga 3000 and running Workbench 2.0. Not that it is the most secure OS in the world, but there isn't a hacker in the world still building viruses for it.