Nearly half of all Macs could lose access to security updates this summer


Unless Apple changes its security update practice, observed Gregg Keizer of Computerworld, "nearly half of all Mac users" may be left without security patches this summer. He was referring to the expected release date for the next version of OS X, known as OS X 10.8 or Mountain Lion.

Though Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) has never spelled out its support policy for older versions of its desktop operating systems, Keizer observed that the company has always dropped support for older versions of its OS when it has two newer versions in the market. "In other words, patches are provided only to the newest OS X and the one immediately preceding it," says Keizer.

What this means is that Snow Leopard users could see support dropped soon after the release of Mountain Lion, expected to be launched in the next few months; the current version of OS X is Lion. The problem however is that Snow Leopard currently accounts for 41.5 percent of all OS X users, according to Net Applications. Though its market share is steadily dropping, it is likely to stay above 30 percent in September; factor in versions of OS X prior to Snow Leopard and the amount at risk adds up to 45.9 percent.

Dismissive of Apple's poor security posture, Eugene Kaspersky, CEO and founder of antivirus software company Kaspersky Lab, last month asserted that Apple is 10 years behind Microsoft on security. "I think they are 10 years behind Microsoft in terms of security," Kaspersky was reported as saying. "For many years, I've been saying that from a security point of view, there is no big difference between Mac and Windows."

For more:
- check out this article at Computerworld

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