Thoughts on the Flashback trojan fiasco

Last week, Mac users all over the world were alerted to check whether their Mac got infected by the Flashback malware Trojan.

The story made the headlines of many non tech newspapers for the only reason that this was the first real malware attack of any sort on the Mac platform.

Over the years Apple has advertised the Mac as a modern computer architecture with advanced security features. To their defence they never claimed the Mac to be malware free. But in the famous Apple vs PC advertising campaign, Apple went on and on talking about how the Mac was more secure than a PC. It was true.

It is also true that now Apple products are infinitely more popular than they used to be. It is in the interest of many hackers to be successful targeting the Mac.

In this particular case Apple has been cocksure on this matter. Why else didn’t they correct the Java vulnerability earlier than April? Oracle – the Java language owner – fixed the vulnerability back in February so two months ago.

This is a worrying occurrence. Apple has not reacted as it should have and the damage to the company’s image is big. Many of my non tech friends are commenting about this on Facebook. In the eyes of the general public the Mac will not be the virus-free [1] platform anymore.

Apple need to get their act together and change their internal practices to give R&D more resources to deal with the next malware attacks on the Mac platform. There is too much at stake for Apple to not seriously tackle this problem.

  1. Flashback is a Trojan not a virus. For the difference go to this page.  ?

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