Windows is without a doubt the most attacked platform in the world. Microsoft's proprietary operating system attracts no less than 96.36% of the world's malicious code, according to malware statistics for 2007, released by Kaspersky. But while Windows leads by a landslide when it comes down to the actual volume of malware that preys on it, Apple's Mac OS X is also a leader in a top that is designed to provide little comfort for its users. OS X is the top platform in terms of the increase of attacks throughout 2007. While the volume of attacks impacting Windows has only grown by 36% from the first half of the past year, compared to the second half, those on Mac OS X exploded by no less than 1,550%.
“Despite the fact that the share of malicious programs for the Win32 environment amounted to 96.36% in 2007, it began to slowly but surely decline. The percentage of threats targeting platforms other than Win32 increased from 3.18% to 3.42% in the first six months of 2007, and exceeded 4% in the second half of the year. Growth for the full year amounted to 3.64%. In the last six months of 2007, the number of malicious programs, AdWare and potentially malicious programs for Win32 increased 36% from the first half of the year,” explained Alexander Gostev. Senior Virus Analyst, Kaspersky Lab.
Aside from Windows, the remaining platforms experienced an increase in attacks of no less than 63%. There is the example of the open source Linux operating system, affected by 121 attacks in H1 2007 and just 45 in H2, therefore a decrease of 63%. At the opposite pole is Mac OS X. In the first half of the past year, Mac OS X suffered just 2 attacks. This number grew by 33 in the second half or a jump of 1,550%. Of course that actually reading Kaspersky's malware statistics per platform in 2007 it is clear that Windows was impacted by 228,593 attacks, while Linux and Mac OS X by just 166 and respectively 35.
“The irrefutable leader (+1550%) was the MacOS X operating system, which was attacked 35 times in 2007, and 33 of those attacks took place in the second half of the year. Our half-yearly report observed the strange absence of any new malicious programs targeting that platform, despite the fact that it was targeted more and more often (over the course of one year, from June 2006 through May 2007, no new malicious programs were created for this platform). But towards the end of the year, the situation changed and matched expert predictions. The most prevalent types of malicious program designed for Macs in 2007 were Trojans, including those which substitute user DNS requests and which are designed to conduct phishing attacks to steal data,” Gostev added.
Kaspersky, Microsoft, Windows, Apple, Mac OS X, Security, Malware