The Macalope Daily: Expect better

Sometimes it’s a beautiful moment when you can reach across the aisle to our Windows-blogging comrades and find common ground.

Well, not really beautiful. Frankly, it’s kind of annoying. But sometimes it has to be done.

Ed “Which platform do I cover again?” Bott says “Flashback malware exposes big gaps in Apple security response,” and the Macalope has to say that the major points he makes are pretty much spot-on. Apple does need to be faster at delivering patches and auto-updating, and more support for older releases and better communication are both needed.

Oh, the horny one could quibble about a few things. He can always find things to quibble about. It’s just in his nature. That’s what it says on the back of his motorcycle jacket: “Born To Quibble.”

For example, is Apple really ten years behind Microsoft as Eugene Kaspersky says? Well, if you look at all of what Kaspersky said, it’s actually hard to argue with his point, which is more about threat level than technology and controls. And one of the reasons Microsoft has to support older versions of its operating systems is that so many people are still using XP because the company made them dependent on it by not shipping a viable alternative for eight years.

It’s important to note that, despite its flaws, Apple has taken the step of simply turning off or doing away with certain third-party technologies that are only there to ease the lives of programmers who don’t want to write native code anyway. And the company has the most secure mobile platform on the market, partly by not including these technologies and partly by locking it down.

But, still, even with that bowl full of delicious Quibble-O’s, Bott’s right. He might want to think about renaming his blog to “Apple Security Daily,” but he’s right.

So, what’s an Apple fanboisé (that’s a French Apple fan who’s also a raspberry) supposed to do?

Turn to a third-party security solution? Reader, please. Peter Cohen tried Sophos’s Mac malware solution and found it to be like spending a weekend with a hypochondriac. “Does this look infected to you? How about this?”

Cohen’s take-away?

I ended up uninstalling Sophos. I found the whole process too disruptive, from the installation to the initial scan to the constant maintenance activity.

Well, OK, then how about Kaspersky? It has a free tool, too.

The lab’s Flashfake Removal Tool was suspended after Kaspersky discovered that it was erroneously removing user settings—including auto-start configurations, user configurations in browsers, and file sharing data—from infected computers.

Oh, right.

See, the thing is, we don’t want this junk. We want Apple to fix this problem. People have this tendency to think that Apple doesn’t respond to criticism, but it does. And having seen how Windows has fared over the last 15 years, the Macalope is quite sure we don’t want that. On any number of levels.

As the Macalope says any time he criticizes his favorite company, “Come on, Apple. This sense of elitism doesn’t build itself.”

[Editors’ Note: In addition to being a mythical beast, the Macalope is not an employee of Macworld. As a result, the Macalope is always free to criticize any media organization. Even ours.]

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