We have all heard people say that Apple computers are better because they CANNOT get viruses. The truth is that, Macs cannot get the same viruses that are designed for PCs.
A computer virus is a program that can copy itself and “infect” a computer without permission or knowledge of the user.
Viruses can be designed for Macs, they just usually are not. They are designed for machines running Windows because it is the most widely used operating system. Specifically, Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Internet Explorer are the most vulnerable programs for viruses – not because they are badly programmed – but because they the market-dominant software for email and web browsing.
If Apple computers take more of the market, we will see hackers spending more time designing programs to take advantage of their users. Right now, it’s not really worth their time.
There was an outbreak of a trojan last year which was designed to affect Apple computers with OS X – OSX/RSPlug-A or OSX/Puper – which are both programs that re-route the DNS for the computer so that it redirected users to malicious web sites.
So, Macs can get viruses just like PCs… It’s just not as common. In fact, as of right now it’s very rare.