|Apple marketed its operating system software as "Mac OS", beginning in 1997. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Not only are they complaining, but they need somewhere for the blame to go (because that's how humans work, nothing can be our fault). Fingers are flying in every direction and I'm afraid to pull out a cheese knife for fear of the repercussions. There are those that insist it's Java's (and therefore Sun Microsystems') fault, while Sun is very quick to point out that Apple has maintained their own Java distribution for years and was responsible for providing a patch (Sun had provided a Windows patch weeks before Flashback was discovered). Even if they would have wanted to, Sun could not have provided a fix for Mac users, and even if they had, Mac users couldn't have installed it.
At the very heart of the problem the blame can be pushed toward Apple. Their under-handed strategy of marketing the Mac as being "Problem Free," "More Secure," and "Virus Free" have lured users into this sense of security, where not enough actual security really exists. But there has to be truth to the statements, right, or they couldn't say it, could they?
Well, yes and no. Mac is essentially a BSD distribution with a fancy interface added, so like most *nix systems it has a native implementation of a firewall that Windows never really had. It's because of this that Apple has been touting the amazing security of their Macs. It helped, for a long time, that Macs weren't really all that popular and not worth targeting with viruses and other malware. Mac users account for at least 20% of the Desktop market and are now being seen as worthwhile targets.
|Sun (Photo credit: ¯/¯ / /\/)|
At the same time though, the Mac users should have had Anti-virus software installed. It exists for a reason, and it's because Macs do get viruses. Any kind of AV would have made quick work of Flashback, if only it had been installed. But perhaps this will fix the misconceptions about Macs not getting viruses and being "problem free."
The truth is, we share the blame here. It's the job of your OS vendor to do everything they can to keep you safe, the job of the software vendors to deliver secure and safe software for us to use, but at the end of the day, you're the final line, the last person on Earth who has any chance of protecting your computer from the constantly growing and evolving pool of viruses and other "bad"-ware. After all, a few bucks for AV software is a tiny price to pay to protect that over-priced pile of hardware on your desk.