Malware & the Walled Garden/Next-Gen Ecosystem

There has been a recent rash of issues regarding Malware targeted at OSX and Apple computers. The response from Apple seems at the moment to be nothing short of shockingly bad.

I can see not wanting to set precedent or fund the act of cleaning folks’ machines, (since Apple’s in-store support has been free for me and I expect fixing these types of issues would be similarly free) But I see no reason for them to outright avoid giving advice or links to articles explaining how to solve the issue.

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I’ll chalk it up to “Shockingly bad” probably prompted in large part by a band of Lawyers.

Update: Apple has promised a fix- see Ars Technica

That aside, I think they’re probably of the mindset that this will help bolster the App Store paradigm they’re clearly winning at right now. If users stop downloading apps (and potential malware) direct from the internet and stick to the App Stores, they would not experience these types of issues.

Since all Apps on the official stores go through a pretty rigorous process (I have been on the receiving end of this several times – its excruciating) you can be pretty darn sure theres nothing that will harm your computer. With the number of apps skyrocketing, choice is also not much of an issue anymore. There *is* a big control issue, but I think 90% of the users out there who own Macs or iOS devices could care less, so long as the selection is there.

As a result, if nothing else I expect a system setting allowing you to disable all non-App Store apps to be forthcoming… and I think most will welcome it.

From a user experience perspective and a security perspective its clearly better than the status quo across any platforms, and this is also a central reason for Apple’s recent success in the consumer space.

In an interesting turn of events, Amazon today announced a Mac App Store, which presumably haze some types of controls regarding what gets in. An interesting turn of events, but also one that shines light on the lack of such a tool from Microsoft…

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