For many years there has been a relaxed attitude towards securing Mac’s as the perception was that Windows devices were more vulnerable. Recently we’ve started to see this shift.
While detections of Mac-targeting adware, malware, and unwanted programs is only 14% of the total suspicious and malicious programs detected by security firm Malwarebytes, the average Mac encounters twice as much malware as the average Windows computer.
Historically Mac devices have been more prevalent in what we’d call the ‘creative & arts’ industry, but as organisations integrate BYOD, Mac devices are being more mainstream in businesses.
We’re not just talking laptops and desktops. Cybercrooks are always looking for new ways to conduct their business. With iPhones being the most popular handheld device in Australia by a long way, we’re seeing targeted scams specific to Apple users.
Our friends over at Sophos have recently identified a new SMS scams doing the rounds targeting Apple uses by impersonating an Apple chatbot. SMS scams are popular because of their simplicity and convenience. People are more likely to click on a link on their phone without a second thought vs an email link. The ability to preview a link is a little harder on a phone than it is in an email.
Another key difference is that whilst Microsoft has long been known for ‘Patch Tuesday’ Apple doesn’t have a regular schedule for updates. They’re often unannounced and can cause issues for app developers who are not given a heads-up, sometimes rendering their apps incompatible. This causes the double-edged sword of update now vs waiting for compatibility. Waiting for compatibility leaves you possibly open to vulnerabilities.
This in itself also presents challenges for the IT administrators supporting these devices, especially when the remote workers just follow Apple’s prompt to update now.
With the lines blurred between work and personal these days, it becomes important to ensure that your devices are protected, regardless of their platform. Let’s not forget about educating your Mac users on the specific do’s and the don’ts of their devices.
Don’t get us wrong, we’ve all got iPhones here at RIGA and this isn’t a beat up on Apple. Every device can be supported and protected. It’s about having a comprehensive technology and security strategy that takes into account the hybrid working world we’re living in now. Hybrid covering device and technology type, along with working location.