Apple’s legal battle with Epic Games has revealed yet another cybersecurity matter in the company’s products, this time with Macs. According to ZDNet, a top executive disclosed that the level of malware that exists in Macs has exceeded its tolerance level.
In court testimony, Apple’s head of software engineering Craig Federighi said, “Today, we have a level of malware on the Mac that we don’t find acceptable.”
This argument is used by the firm to justify its tight control of the App Store for iPhones and iPads, which Epic took issue with after the game Fortnite was removed from the gallery.
The removal was due to the gaming company incorporating a built-in direct payment method for its in-game currency, which would allow the firm to evade Apple’s 30% fee imposed on developers.
Since the beginning of the case, Apple has been firm about its stance that it is protecting its customers’ security and privacy. In the recent proceeding, Federighi highlighted that Mac has been dealing with 130 types of malware, one of which affecting 300,000 units.
Mac is also described to have a “significantly larger malware problem” that leads to an “endless game of whack-a-mole” compared to its mobile offerings. One reason for this is that Mac systems accept installations from various sources, while iOS systems only allow installations from the App Store.
The malware problem in Macs was also observed by cybersecurity and anti-malware company Malwarebytes which saw that the Apple system’s issue is now outdoing the numbers for Windows.
Federighi asserted that Mac is designed to have such flexibility, while iOS is intended to protect users, especially children. He also argued that if the company allows the installation of apps from other sources, then it would put consumers at more risk.
Interestingly, Forbes found that Federighi’s admittance of Mac’s malware problem is different than what its webpage says. According to the website, “The technically sophisticated runtime protection in macOS work at the very core of your Mac to keep your system safe from malware.”
The Forbes article also pointed out that the executive’s claims that the company is worried about risks if it opens up the iOS for sideloading contradict what is stated on its website.
The site says, “Now apps from both the App Store and the Internet can be installed worry-free.” The company claims that App Review and Gatekeeper make sure that all apps from the internet are checked for malicious codes.