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Is the Mac Really Safer Then a PC Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes

Everyone claims the mac is safer but realisticly isn't it less safe because most people on a mac are not as cautious as pc users. Pc users are running software firewalls to see what connections are coming in and out, sandboxing type software and other security type programs.
If someone personally knows you are on a mac seems they could target you better since they know you proably won't be looking for anything out of the ordinary.

What do you guys think

Last edited by Ken Case; 2007-05-11 at 01:40 PM.. Reason: Removed the spam link attached to a comma. couldn't get the response you wanted over at the Battlefront at Ars Technica so you decided you'd post here?

Given the exact duplication of the message here as is there, I don't know whether you're a human or not.
"Vroom! Vroom!!"
I'm not sure how many exploits Apple is aware of but hasn't patched yet, but at any given time there's about 200 for Windows. And that's also 200 that they haven't disclosed. If someone really wants to target you, they can get into a fully patched Windows machine with the firewall enabled.

Macs are slightly less susceptible to social engineered attacks. For example, if I get an email stating I have a virus and I need to delete a specific file, I'm going to know it's likely not true. Whereas many Windows users do.
I use a firewall. I monitor my ingoing and outgoing traffic. Where is it written that Mac users simply don't care??
As far as security is concerned, in addition to unpatched vulnerabilities, I do believe that being asked for an admin password for software installation does make a difference. A lot of people running XP run it as admin users and all kind of junk can install itself wayyyyy too easily.
Given that googling MayGirrl gives several hundred hits where she is a single post author of the identical post on forums ranging from the Israeli military through dog obedience schools and organic gardening (and many forums have deleted her post), methinks 'she' is not an organic carbon-based life form....

Makes me wonder how she got past the captcha.

Maybe she's just a virus... so the question is, Mac or PC?
Captcha makes it harder, not impossible. There are ways to defeat it:

and others.

Greetings! I asked a friend of mine (PhD in EE/Computer Science from Harvard) who is a senior consultant in computer security with both commercial and US government clients this question. And I added, "And if so, why? -- is it the fact that the Mac community is so small that it is not a big challenge to the hackers, or is there something inherent in the Mac architecture that makes it safer?"

His answer: Some of both. Certainly the Microsoft/PC model is a more enticing target for bad guys, but remember that the Mac rides on a UNIX kernel. UNIX was developed (in the '70s?) by Bell Labs for one purpose: To provide security on multi-user systems. Back then they were called minicomputers -- the DEC VAX was typical. The goal was to make it very easy for a user to get to his own data, but very difficult to get to someone else's data.

My friend felt the PC was full of security holes and probably always will be.

This makes sense to me. For example, on a Mac or any *nix system, even if you are logged in as administrator, you have to provide your password or execute sudo in order to write to important files. Windows has no such safeguard.

Of course, the number one vulnerability is doing day-to-day work as administrator, which the average user will never understand. Nevertheless, even as a simple user on Windows machines, I manage to get to files that I don't think I should be able to get to. :)

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