The Security Behind Mac Osx Essay

2034 Words Jun 17th, 2013 9 Pages
The Security Behind Mac OSX:
Why Apple, Inc Doesn’t Worry About Viruses
Matthew Long

As many have heard, Macintosh Computers, and more in general Apple Inc., is beginning to really take flight in consumer households. The overwhelming numbers of available viruses to Windows computers, phones, and Android devices surpasses the millions. In fact, in April of 2012, Symantec released a report noting its latest Virus definitions file that contained 17,702,868 separate signatures (Bott). This number seems quite ridiculous regarding the amount of viruses available. However, the same report given by Symantec 8 days earlier only reported 17,595,922 virus definitions, meaning that 106,946 definitions were
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This is somewhat similar to what Microsoft introduced in Windows 7 that was referred to as user account control, that prevents unauthorized changes to your computer. The computer will ask for the user’s password, or in some cases and administrator password, in order to run or install an application. In Apple’s own words, sandboxing “protects the system by limiting the kinds of things an application can do, such as accessing files on disk or resources over the network.” The best example of sandboxing is an example of a garden. Say a person has a beautiful garden with a well-manicured lawn, shimmering koi pond and rows of flowering plants. Imagine someone shows up and ruins this garden by throwing trash in it, rips up all of the flowers, and dumps toxic waste into the pond -- it would take months to clean and may possibly never look the same. However, if there was a way to contain this perpetrator by building a box around them, the cleanup would go smoothly and the rest of the garden could remain beautiful. Replace the perpetrator with “malware” and the garden with “Mac” to get the essence of sandboxing (Simon).

ASLR, or address space layout randomization, and sometimes called “library randomization”, is the next main feature of the Macintosh operating system. ASLR will randomly arrange the positions of key data areas to prevent malware authors from predicting target addresses. Along with ASLR, Mac OSX has no registry. Therefore, major system files

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