Apple no longer claims its computers invulnerable; ‘Geniuses’ still do

Stephen Elliott Contributor
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In early June, Apple quietly dropped the long-standing claim that their Mac line of computers was not “susceptible to the thousands of viruses plaguing Windows-based computers,” but the in-store “Geniuses” continue to proclaim the invulnerability of the computers.

For years, Apple has claimed their Mac line of computers does not get viruses like their Windows counterparts. But, Apple dropped the statement from its website in early June and replaced it with a statement that a Mac is “built to be safe.”

Apple Store’s “Geniuses,” however, continue to make the claim. “Geniuses” — also known as people who work at Apple stores — at three separate locations told The Daily Caller that anti-virus software for Mac computers was unnecessary.

When asked if anti-virus software was necessary for a MacBook Pro, one of Apple’s most popular laptop computers, a “Genius” at the Apple Store in Georgetown told TheDC we “should be good” without anti-virus software.

The “Genius” went on to mention that they do offer anti-virus software, but neither he nor anyone he knew had ever needed it, despite online behavior that would make his computer susceptible to viruses.

A “Genius” from the Apple Store in Bethesda, MD told TheDC our “operating system already has anti-virus software built in on it.” Apple did introduce minimal malware protection built into its Snow Leopard operating system in 2009, seen as the first admission by the computer giant that its computers may be vulnerable to cyber attacks.

Cyber security experts have always claimed that Apple computers are no less vulnerable to attack than Windows-based computers. Until the recent advent of the iPod, iPhone, and new versions of the MacBook, Apple computers held a significantly smaller share of computers than Windows, so it was less likely that viruses would be created targeting Mac computers.

The “Geniuses” at the Apple Store on the Upper West Side in New York City were straightforward with their advice. “Honestly, to tell you the truth, you really don’t need [anti-virus software],” said one of the “Geniuses.”

Software security experts have called on Apple for years to drop their invulnerability claim. Apple finally succumbed after the Flashback Trojan in April, which affected approximately 600,000 Macs, more than 1 percent of all Mac computers worldwide.

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Stephen Elliott