For those who came in late, Apple is involved in an embarrassing antitrust trial over the pond in which the knives are being stuck into the company’s image. One of the items of faith in the Apple cult is that its Macs are secure thanks to the extreme controls that Jobs’ Mob has in place to protect its users.
However, when Apple’s Senior Vice President of Software Engineering Craig Federighi appeared in court, he felt forced to come clean about security, particularly noting that the Mac currently has a level of malware that Apple "does not find acceptable".
What this testimony revealed was that there is an internal split within Apple between its mobile executives and its traditional Mac executives.
Federighi's goals were to paint the iPhone ecosystem, including the App Store and lack of side-loading support, as a secure and trusted environment for users. To do this, it appears that part of Federighi's strategy is to throw the Mac under the bus.
Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers, who is presiding over the Epic vs. Apple case, asked Federighi about why the Mac can have multiple app stores, but not the iPhone.
"It is regularly exploited on the Mac. iOS has established a dramatically higher bar for customer protection. The Mac is not meeting that bar today. Today, we have a level of malware on the Mac that we don't find acceptable", Federighi added.
Federighi added that Apple is playing "an endless game of whack-a-mole" with malware on the Mac and has to block "many instances" of infections that can affect "hundreds of thousands of people" every week.
Since last May, Federighi testified there have been 130 types of Mac malware, and one of them infected 300,000 systems.
When asked whether side-loading would affect security on iOS, Federighi said things would change "dramatically. No human policy review could be enforced because if software could be signed by people and downloaded directly, you could put an unsafe app up and no one would check that policy".
Federighi said that Android suffered from the same issues but "iOS has succeeded so far in staying ahead of the malware problem".
So, if an Apple fanboy tells you that Macs are free from malware, unlike Windows, you can tell them that even Apple does not believe its Macs are safe.