Could iOS's strengths lead to vulnerability?


It seems almost every week another federal agency reveals plans to ditch their BlackBerry devices in favor of Apple devices.

The reason so many federal agencies are turning to iOS is because, they say, it provides a better user experience than BlackBerry and consistency that is lacking on the Android platform. According to their logic, BlackBerry is clunky and outdated, while Android varies significantly by version and manufacturer, making security a challenge.  

But iOS's increasing popularity could lead to vulnerability.

The mobile platform's security claims in many ways mirror its arguments in the traditional enterprise computing realm. Apple has historically held that Mac devices have superior security in part because Windows devices proliferate in the enterprise. Because Windows dominates enterprise IT, there's more incentive for attackers.

As more enterprises gravitate toward Mac and Apple's market share increases, the tide could be turning. Just this week, security company Intego uncovered a new malware package for OS X--a key-logging Trojan horse called OSX/Dockster.A. And earlier this year, security firm Sophos noted the growth in Mac malware as well, finding that one in five Macs now harbor some form of malware.  

The changes in the Mac landscape beg the question: Could the same shift happen to iOS?

As more and more agencies make iOS their preferred platform, it could very well become the new preferred target for malicious actors. Although for the time being, it appears iOS can do no wrong in the eyes of federal IT, Mac's changing threat environment reminds us that no one platform is impervious forever. - Molly