For years, one of the major selling points of Apple devices was their security, as they just didn’t seem to be vulnerable to most malware or viruses. Sadly, those days are long over and Apple products are just as vulnerable as Microsoft or other platforms. So what happened?
What Changed to Make Apple Devices Vulnerable?
Most of what it comes down to is market share. Hackers and those who develop malware are interested in numbers, and especially prior to smartphones being ubiquitous, Apple simply didn’t have the numbers.
Apple has nearly 33% of the mobile and tablet operating system market share worldwide, meaning there is a vast pool of targets – both individual and business – for hackers to target. In 2016, Microsoft’s desktop operating system market share dropped below 90% for the first time, giving hackers even more of a reason to start caring about Apple.
According to Trend Micro, Apple’s operating system vulnerabilities have been increasing as well. From 2015 to 2016, the number of Apple vulnerabilities rose from 33 to 88, and the Windows vulnerabilities dropped from 175 to 93.
How to Protect Yourself and Your Business
For a business of any size, regardless of the mobile and desktop operating systems your enterprise solutions utilise, the best way to protect yourself is to invest in endpoint Security Solutions. Endpoint security solutions mean ensuring every device on your network, as well as those connecting to your network, are properly maintained and secured.
For smaller businesses without IT security experts on board, as well as for individuals, there are some simpler best practices to protect yourself from the majority of potential attacks. Possibly most importantly is to keep all software and devices up to date. Once a vulnerability is exposed it will be exploited aggressively, so not patching your software leaves your device open to attack.
On top of updates you must ensure your passwords are strong, meaning not guessable information, not dictionary words, and not proper nouns, at least as a baseline. Keeping up to date (and running!) virus protection software should be considered a must.
While Apple devices may no longer be ‘safe’, they aren’t at any more risk than any other device either.