Apple’s Security Halo Is Falling

For the longest time, Apple’s customers have pointed to the Cupertino company’s “better” security as a reason to ditch Windows and move into their walled garden. But the security landscape has changed and we are facing new threats. Recent events suggest Apple’s supposed security superiority is being eroded by smarter bad guys and errors coming from Apple’s development team.

Last week, Apple was forced into the hasty release of a patch to deal with a root account vulnerability and earlier this year the KRACK issue caused them to issue a similar out-of-cycle update weeks after Microsoft quietly fixed the issue in their software.

I’m the first to admit I’ve been a bit of an Apple fan-boy but these recent issues aren’t filling me with confidence. While the company has dropped two new iPhones and an updated Apple TV on us, they have been caught short. I imagine they couldn’t run this ad today.

Security is no longer a bolt-on or after thought. It needs to be baked into our software. And it’s about trust.

Recent events suggest Apple is stretching the friendship on that trust. What do you think?

WATCH MORE: Tech News

Comments

    Recent events suggest Apple’s supposed security superiority is being eroded by smarter bad guys and errors coming from Apple’s development team.

    I don't think so.

    Windows may have gotten flack about being insecure, etc. But here's the thing, the vulnerabilities were popping up because people were (literally) making it their life mission to find them.

    Eventually patches came out to close the holes.

    The end result is the constant finding of vulnerabilities to prove a point has actually made the OS stronger.

    Even without this though, despite Apple's claim of being more secure, it is frequently the first system to be compromised in the Pown2own (?) conferences.

    Apple has sat on the market buzz for too long and now the wakeup call has come too late.

    Last edited 08/12/17 7:36 am

    Hardly.

    If you have software, you have bugs. That’s simply a fact of life.
    Like all companies, Apple issues regular security updates to protect users from the worst.

    I suspect this is to some degree an illusion of:

    1. the "popularity" factor. Until the mid-00s, Apple OSes were only on a minority of devices. Few people ran MacOS and iOS hadn't been released yet. So a poor return on time/effort investment for hacking vs going after the much more popular Windows.

    2. the "ease"factor. Earlier Apple OSes were relatively simple and benefitted from the inherent secureness of the Unix user model. So while not invulnerable, getting in wasn't straightforward. Around the same time Windows was an open house with numerous vulnerabilities, default user admin rights and no enforce patching. So, again it's not surprising everyone went after the lower hanging fruit.

    Since then Apple OSes are on far more devices (as a fraction of total) and increasing complexity invites errors. Apple is also falling prey to the arms race mentality with a seemingly constant push to out-feature Android and Windows. So it's not surprising that the rush to market allows critical security bugs to slip through.

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