Think recent reports that Mac malware is a very real threat are just another example of security researchers crying wolf? Think again.
An AppleCare support representative says that not only are call centers being inundated with reports about the MacDefender malware, but that Apple employees who help customers remove it from their computer can be fired.
In an interview with Ed Bott, an AppleCare support rep who obviously would prefer to remain anonymous says that call volume at his call center is four-five times greater than it used to be since the rise of MacDefender…. and although it’s easy to remove if you know how, AppleCare reps are forbidden to do so since it “sets the expectation to customers that we will be able to remove all malware in the future. That’s what antivirus is for.”
Not that that stops them, necessarily. Right now, a lot of AppleCare reps are choosing to help customers, and their higher-ups are looking the other way as they try to get the MacDefender crisis under control. But technically, any employee who helps remove malware from a Mac is subject to immediate termination.
Ironically, it appears that the belief that Macs are impervious to viruses and malware is part of what’s causing so many people to become infected. Many people are falling for MacDefender because, using a Mac, they think they have nothing to fear from malware, and have let their guard down.
So what’s Apple’s official take on Mac malware. According to the AppleCare customer service rep, the official policy is that Macs do get viruses and malware, and even though you’re using a Mac, you need antivirus and anti-malware software.