Computer viruses are every Windows user’s nightmare. Suddenly and without warning, the mouse stops responding and a warning window appears on the screen informing you that the operating system has encountered an irreparable error. This window is reproduced infinitely while the machine beeps at odd intervals. We have no choice but to pray that everything works normally when we forcefully shut down the computer and turn it on again.
This situation, which is very common for those using the Microsoft operating system, causes some to consider replacing their computers with an Apple Mac or MacBook because there is a common belief that their computers will not be infected with viruses. But is this really true? Are Apple’s computers immune to viruses that cause companies and individuals to spend billions of dollars each year on protection programs?
Can Macbook get viruses?
Answer is yes. Macs, like computers running Windows, can be affected by malware, including but not limited to nasty viruses and Trojans. However, experts agree that a Mac family computer is much less likely to be infected with one of these malwares than devices using the Microsoft operating system.
The reasons why a Mac or Macbook is less likely to be infected with a virus are diverse and there is disagreement among experts; but most people agree that the strength of Apple’s operating system and low market share are responsible for Macs’ apparent immunity to viruses.
Because Apple’s MacOS operating system is an open source system (the term for software that is freely distributed and developed), it does not have the loopholes that make Microsoft’s Windows system more vulnerable. The open source used by Apple allows anyone with programming knowledge to contribute to the detection of security vulnerabilities, thus making the system more secure against attacks.
Since Windows is a closed-source system, only the company’s own programmers can find these flaws, making the system more fragile. Additionally, the tool Apple uses for programming stands out as one of the factors that make Macs less vulnerable to viruses. The programming code used on the Macintosh platform is more secure than the Microsoft programming language.
So we can say that the operating system and programming languages make Macs stronger against viruses. To these two elements, some experts would add the obstacles that Apple computer users face when installing certain programs that can facilitate the entry of viruses.
Can a Mac get viruses?
However, the lower number of virus cases on Macs is not just due to technical problems. Experts agree that one important factor is the huge difference in market share that Windows has compared to Apple computers.
Computers running Windows have a much larger market share than Apple. This makes most hackers more interested in looking for vulnerabilities in the security of the Microsoft operating system. Although numbers vary, Windows accounts for roughly 95% of the PC market, compared to 4% for Mac and 0.5% for other operating systems.
After all, we must not forget that in most cases the person who creates viruses does so to obtain an economic benefit, and therefore creating a virus for Windows is more profitable than creating it for Apple’s operating system. After all, viruses try to infect as many computers as possible, and due to the small number of users on Macs, the spread of malicious programs is limited.
In any case, one should not let one’s guard down. Recently, and as more Apple computers have been sold, new viruses have emerged that attack operating systems.
The vast majority of malware is aimed at Windows users. Approximately 100,000 new malicious programs for Windows are detected every day. While the number of malware available for Mac OS is much less than for Windows, there’s no need to fool yourself into thinking there are no Mac threats out there.